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Lamar Smith, Future Chairman For the House Committee On Science, Space, and Tech 292

Posted by Soulskill
from the politician-selected-for-job-in-politics dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Lamar Smith, a global warming skeptic, will become the new chairman of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. Someone who disagrees with the vast majority of scientists will be given partial jurisdiction over NASA, EPA, DOE, NSF, NOAA, and the USGS. When will candidates who are actually qualified to represent science or at a minimum show an interest in it be the representatives of science with regard to political decision-making?"
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Lamar Smith, Future Chairman For the House Committee On Science, Space, and Technology

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  • by bfmorgan (839462) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:33PM (#42122685)
    Please vote them in to office.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by systemidx (2708649)
      Qualified individuals are too intelligent to run for office.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:59PM (#42123129)

      This is the house, where an insignificant little nowhere can get a ton of free crap by just electing the same person for 40 years straight thereby giving him enough seniority to gain influence, chair important committees and bring a ton of pork back to his district.

      Vote him out? It's not in the best interests of the few constituents he has. All his negatives are externalities that his constituents don't have to pay.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:50PM (#42123795)
        Lamar Smith is the Representative of the 21st Congressional district of Texas [wikipedia.org] which contains parts of the Austin and San Antonio metro areas. It's also gerrymandered to hell and back, specifically designed to break up the citizens of those two metro areas.
        • by rednip (186217) <[rednip] [at] [gmail.com]> on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @09:17PM (#42125361) Journal
          This map of districts 'servicing' downtown Austin [wikipedia.org] is from the Texas's 21st congressional district [wikipedia.org] on wikipedia. One should note that the street in the dead center of that mess is named 'Martin Luther King Jr', I'll leave it to the reader to figure out what the means. It includes the 25th District and the 10th district [slashdot.org] which includes both some of 'downtown' Austin and Huston suburbs. So Austin, arguably the most liberal city in Texas has three Republicans representing it.
          • by whitroth (9367)

            ROTFLMAO!

            I lived in Austin from '86 through '94. If the district includes a lot of "downtown", it includes almost no voters.

            Apparently in the late seventies/early eighties, Austin did the worst possible kind of "urban renewal", which included ripping down almost *all* housing and buildings for small stores. All that's left are Sixth St., where the clubs are... and office buildings. Except for the Capitol, there's NOTHING ELSE THERE. About 2/3rds of the busses that go downtown weekdays don't run downtown wee

      • by Newander (255463)

        If we were to get the Democrats back in the majority, though, these guys wouldn't be the chairmen.

        • by verifine (685231)

          Indeed, let's all bow in sync and vote single party rule. After all, only one party knows what is best for you, and especially for me. Let's be like California, which has a democrat super majority, as I understand. Only good can come from this; no opposition, only sacred and loving devotion to a single party and its goals, stated and otherwise.

          Having opposition views is *so* inconvenient.

  • by retroworks (652802) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:34PM (#42122715) Homepage Journal
    Hall's opposition was even more pronounced. One could even say that by appointing Lamar Smith, who only attacked "one sided coverage" (vs the 88 year old Hall's direct attack on the science), that Texas may be slowly warming up to the idea... http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2011/12/ralph-hall-speaks-out-on-climate.html [sciencemag.org]
  • Skeptic is ok... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Geoffrey.landis (926948) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:38PM (#42122789) Homepage

    If he were merely a skeptic, that's ok; a skeptic is a person who's willing to look at the data and see what they say.

    However, far too many of the people who call themselves "skeptics" are in fact not skeptics at all, but global-warming deniers: they don't care what the data is, and aren't really interested in learning. They're not really skeptical, because they already have their conclusion, and are only interested in arguments that support it.

    To quote S. Fred Singer, "The deniers are giving us skeptics a bad name."

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by readin (838620)

      If he were merely a skeptic, that's ok; a skeptic is a person who's willing to look at the data and see what they say.

      However, far too many of the people who call themselves "skeptics" are in fact not skeptics at all, but global-warming deniers: they don't care what the data is, and aren't really interested in learning.

      I'm an agnostic. I don't know if or how much global warming is occurring; and given the hyper-partisan rhetoric, name-calling, and various logical fallacies coming from both sides I don't think I'll know for a very long time.

      The term you use, "denier", is a perfect example and is in fact a Godwin. The term was well known for Holocaust denier and once it became appropriately stained people started using it to label skeptics of their pet ideas when they didn't want to have to actually convince anyone.

      • by Black Parrot (19622) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:50PM (#42123799)

        I'm an agnostic. I don't know if or how much global warming is occurring; and given the hyper-partisan rhetoric, name-calling, and various logical fallacies coming from both sides I don't think I'll know for a very long time.

        So skip the partisans and see what qualified people have to say: scientists.

        The term you use, "denier", is a perfect example and is in fact a Godwin. The term was well known for Holocaust denier and once it became appropriately stained people started using it to label skeptics of their pet ideas when they didn't want to have to actually convince anyone.

        Bullshit. If someone denies a well established fact, they're a denier. The only common bond they have with people who deny other well established facts is that they reject facts established by mountains of evidence.

        • by readin (838620) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @07:47PM (#42124479)

          I'm an agnostic. I don't know if or how much global warming is occurring; and given the hyper-partisan rhetoric, name-calling, and various logical fallacies coming from both sides I don't think I'll know for a very long time.

          So skip the partisans and see what qualified people have to say: scientists.

          The problem is, I'm not a climate scientist or even a weather scientist. Nor do I work in a field closely related to them. Frankly I'm unqualified to survey the literature myself. Normally for something like this I would listen to what knowledgeable people say who have read the literature, but in this case knowledgeable people are divided. So my next approach would be to consider who is making the various arguments, what their tone is, whether they seem to be trying to honestly convince me, etc. However in this case both sides are pretty full of people who I don't trust for various reasons. Some because they have backing from corporations that stand to lose money if GW is addressed. Some because they have their own money sources if GW is addressed. Many because they've resorted to name-calling and insults instead of reasoned arguments. Case in point...

          The term you use, "denier", is a perfect example and is in fact a Godwin. The term was well known for Holocaust denier and once it became appropriately stained people started using it to label skeptics of their pet ideas when they didn't want to have to actually convince anyone.

          Bullshit. If someone denies a well established fact, they're a denier. The only common bond they have with people who deny other well established facts is that they reject facts established by mountains of evidence.

          So basically you're saying that what you believe to be true is a "well established fact" which frees you up to call anyone who disagrees with you a "denier" which, as I noted before, first gained notoriety as a term describing holocaust deniers. So is it true then that anyone who disagrees with you is the moral equivalent of a holocaust denier.

          • Re:Skeptic is ok... (Score:5, Interesting)

            by steveg (55825) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:03PM (#42124633)

            ...but in this case knowledgeable people are divided.

            Well, knowledgeable people are divided on every topic. The question is divided how? If it's 50-50 or even 60-40, I can see some ambiguity. If it's 95-5 or thereabouts (which actually seems to be the case) then it's much less so.

            And maybe it's just me, but my mind doesn't go to "holocaust denier" when the term "denier" comes up. I've been hearing the term with regard to global warming for some time, and your post is the first time I've ever seen anybody try to draw that connection, and it certainly wouldn't have occured to *me*.

          • Re:Skeptic is ok... (Score:5, Informative)

            by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland.yahoo@com> on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:15PM (#42124737) Homepage Journal

            " but in this case knowledgeable people are divided"
            NO! they are not. It's is a fake controversy manufactured for rating and the illusion of debate. Nothing more.
            The experts in the field have consensus.

            "So basically you're saying that what you believe to be true is a "well established fact" "
            no. AGW is a well established fact.

            As the poster stated: Anyone who opposed something that has a well established facts is a denier. The ONLY exception is if you bring forth a different testable idea. At which point you see if the data fits and have actual scientific debate.

            You may have never heard the term 'denier' before the holocaust denier issue, but it has been used for other things for at least 30 years that I personally know of.
            A denier is someone who denies facts. YOU are the one that tried to connect to the holocaust. There is a logical fallacy there, you might want to look it up.

            If you want real world examples look at China. AGW harm there growth more then anyone on the country, and they say it's real. Look at the predictions, there only fault is that they are turning out to be too conservative.

            But you don't understand the literature, so you refuse to believe the community they is experts in the field.
            That makes no sense. I'ts like not understanding set theory so you refuse to accept that Cartesian product is real, and the Georg cantor was on the doll of big Maths.

          • The problem is, I'm not a climate scientist or even a weather scientist. Nor do I work in a field closely related to them. Frankly I'm unqualified to survey the literature myself. Normally for something like this I would listen to what knowledgeable people say who have read the literature, but in this case knowledgeable people are divided.

            You can't know everything, so IMO the sensible thing to do is to defer to the experts. If I wanted to know about star formation, I'd defer to an astronomer, or better yet an astrophysicist, but wouldn't care a fig what a newscaster or successful CEO thinks.

            Regarding "divided", for a while the American Association of Petroleum Geologists was the only professional society that rejected global warming, and even they caved in in 2007.

            See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_opinion_on_climate_change#Stateme [wikipedia.org]

          • by Genda (560240) <mariet@nOSpAM.got.net> on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @10:36PM (#42125951) Journal

            People keep trying to isolate climate scientists, like there's this little fraternity of 20 guys all sitting at a pub in Scotland trying to figure out what they can pull over the worlds eyes. Here's the problem. The climate impacts things. Lots of things. Things all over the place. So when a scientist at NASA who's an expert on what keeps low earth satellites up in space tells you that there is less drag on satellites today, because the upper atmosphere is colder, the compliment to global warming in the lower atmosphere, he's being a climate scientist. And when the biologist tells you that temperatures in ocean water in the tropics is killing off coral around the world she's become a climate scientist. An when the agricultural botanist tells fruit farmers that they have to change up their fertilization straightedges because spring comes 4 weeks earlier than it did 20 years ago he's become a climate scientist. So when you say climate scientist today you in fact are talking about a body of scientists whose disciplines cover hundreds of difference scientific fields including meteorology, biology and botany, oceanography, paleontology, astrophysics, geology and chemistry. This doesn't even begin to talk about the huge subdivision of these sciences, and the tens of thousands of researchers involved. This issue has been investigated, validate and corroborated from so many different angles it is now one of the better understood processes on the planet today.

            Here's the crazy part. Remove the billions of dollars worth of FUD and noise being generated by the guys who just want to keep burning carbon, who pretty much own the world as we know it today, guys who really don't appreciate anyone telling them its time to change up, and you'll find a consensus among respected scientific sources that is pretty much comparable to the certainty reserved for evolution, a round earth and relativity. The only real controversy is that people want what people want when they want it, and this is damn inconvenient.

            If you want to know why the scientists are emphatic, and angry, and loud about this, imagine being in a passenger in a car being driven at high velocity towards a cliff while the driver is busy inspecting the condition of the visor. You might get a wee bit emphatic in suggesting he just drive instead. If he continued to ignore the approaching precipice you might even get a little testy. Our government is owned and operated on the behalf of men with power. Consider this in the same category as "9 or of 10 doctors smoke XXX Brand Cigarettes." anyone who thinks the entire scientific community is falsifying research to raise more research money must therefore assume all science it just made up, pulled out of some learned man's behind like to perverse magic trick to pay for puttering around laboratories. That would be lawyers and marketing men whispering in your ears. Stop listening to the lawyers and marketing men.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by geekoid (135745)

        "and various logical fallacies coming from both sides I don't think I'll know for a very long time. "
        or you could, you know, read the the actually climatologist are saying.
        Scientifically there is no debate. AGW is real. So you can stick you head in the sand becasue pundits blather about nonsense, but that's cowardly and short sighted.

      • by mjwx (966435) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:28PM (#42124883)

        The term you use, "denier", is a perfect example and is in fact a Godwin. The term was well known for Holocaust denier and once it became appropriately stained people started using it to label skeptics of their pet ideas when they didn't want to have to actually convince anyone.

        Bollocks, "denier" is perfectly apt for someone who refuses to look at facts that they disagree with.

        A sceptic will say, "What evidence do you have that you had breakfast this morning".
        A denier will say, "I don't believe you had breakfast this morning" stick their fingers in their ears and shout "LA LA LA LA I CANT HEAR YOU".

        You are right that denier is a term of ridicule, but these people bring the ridicule on themselves. If we didn't call them "deniers" they'd still be ridiculed all the same.

    • > far too many of the people who call themselves "skeptics" are in fact not skeptics at all

      Sadly yes. :-/ The correct term is Pseudo-Skeptic or Irrational Rationalists.

      i.e. see Sofka's excellent "Myths of Skepticism" whitepaper.
      http://homepages.rpi.edu/~sofkam/papers/skeptik.html [rpi.edu]

      or Wu's very interesting essay which despite it being on a different topic altogether lays out the problems of pseudoskeptics.
      http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/Introduction.htm [debunkingskeptics.com]

      Great quote BTW !

    • Re:Skeptic is ok... (Score:5, Informative)

      by WOOFYGOOFY (1334993) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:50PM (#42125123)

      The irony is that there is no convincing evidence that the global climate is actually warming.- Fred Singer

      "The atmospheric temperature record between 1978 and 2000 (both from satellites and, independently, from radiosondes) doesn't show a warming. Neither does the ocean." - Fred Singer

      Yeah Fred Singer isn't a skeptic he's a denier and one of the worst ones at that.

      The attempt to portray him as some sort of reasonable doubter is a PR move, initiated by himself, and nothing more.

      http://www.skepticalscience.com/singer-criticises-deniers.html [skepticalscience.com]

      He's been so dramatically wrong on so many issues where the evidence was incontrovertible and always in the favor of the industry that was paying him, it's hard to conclude that he's a just liar for hire. He's been called out for stating falsehoods so frequently, displayed so little remorse or contrition when caught and about things of such great consequence - the life and death of millions of people- that it's hard not to conclude that he's a textbook sociopath.

      http://www.desmogblog.com/s-fred-singer [desmogblog.com]

      http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=S._Fred_Singer [sourcewatch.org]

      The list of scientific facts that Fred Singer has denied over the years doesn't paint a pretty picture. He's denied CFCs were responsible for the hole in the ozone, something he termed the "ozone scare".

      He's denied that second hand smoke causes the spectrum of diseases second hand smoke does indeed cause.

      He's denied that acid rain was a problem or what caused by industry emissions.

      He's denied human caused climate change.

      http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2008/01/20/202297/unstoppable-disinformation-every-15-minutes-from-fred-singer/ [thinkprogress.org]

      http://climateinsight.wordpress.com/editorial/merchant-of-doubt-s-fred-singer/ [wordpress.com]

      http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=S._Fred_Singer [sourcewatch.org]

      and so on ad naseum...

    • There's another category which is at odds with the environmentalist movement, which is where I sit. Yeah, we've got global warming. Is it important? I'd say no.

      We can't predict when cold or warm cycles will happen with any good degree of accuracy. However they do come. What we do know for sure is that the continents will eventually drift to become Pangaea Ultima. In such a configuration, there can't be any polar ice caps, and the globe will be much hotter than it is now.

      The earth was in such a configuration

  • by Meneth (872868)

    When will candidates who are actually qualified to represent science or at a minimum show an interest in it be the representatives of science with regard to political decision-making?

    When a majority starts using their brains to vote. Which means, probably never.

    • by tnk1 (899206)

      Democracy isn't a particularly good method for coming to facts, especially when you find yourself realizing that your own personal interest is not served by acceptance of that fact.

    • by Fallon (33975)
      The problem is science & engineering types tend to go for science & engineering jobs. Politicians & those with good social skills or massive egos tend to run for office. The whole political process is biased towards the wrong type of qualifications. You can't fault the voters for picking an idiot when their only options are dumb & dumber.
    • by geekoid (135745)

      They do. But people can only make decision on the data they have.
      That is why media manipulation is a problem. GIGO.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The candidate (Lamar Smith) is not there to represent science, so he doesn't really need to be qualified for that. He's not there to represent NASA, EPA, DOE, NSF, NOAA, and the USGS. He's there to represent the people who elected him, and more broadly all of the people of the US. Just playing devil's advocate here. Not everyone in the US agrees with all things science.

    • by h4rr4r (612664) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:05PM (#42123197)

      You can't disagree with facts. You can be ignorant of them, but you can't disagree as they are not matters of opinion. Sometimes there are not two sides, the earth is round, the sun is the center of the solar system, the earth is billions of years old.

      At least he is replacing the "lies from the pit of hell" moron.

      • by gQuigs (913879)

        I disagree :)

        In fact, it's right in the definition: to dissent in opinion (from another person) or dispute (about an idea, fact, etc.)
        http://www.thefreedictionary.com/disagree [thefreedictionary.com]

        Now.. that doesn't make their positions any less wrong.

      • by medcalf (68293) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:46PM (#42123743) Homepage
        You have to account, though, for the truth that not all things claimed to be facts, particularly in politicized subjects, are actually facts. For example, temperature measurements are facts, though their accuracy can be questioned. Global temperature, though, is not a fact: it is an extraction on facts (the temperature readings) filtered through assumptions and patches (like assuming that temperature changes smoothly and uniformly between places where temperatures are measured). On top of those extrapolations, people have layered conclusions, some of which are reasonable (which does not make them facts but inferences), some of which are not. But it's pretty clear that just arguing that AGW is a fact won't get you anywhere, because the totality of what is commonly meant by that term is not a fact or set of facts, though it does include some facts, even if it later turns out to have reached a correct conclusion. "Shut up" is rarely an effective argument.
    • He can represent his district by voting on legislation. He doesn't belong as the head of a committee on a subject he's incompetent at.
    • by Black Parrot (19622) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:52PM (#42123815)

      The candidate (Lamar Smith) is not there to represent science, so he doesn't really need to be qualified for that. He's not there to represent NASA, EPA, DOE, NSF, NOAA, and the USGS. He's there to represent the people who elected him, and more broadly all of the people of the US. Just playing devil's advocate here. Not everyone in the US agrees with all things science.

      "The people" elected him to represent their district. A political machine made him chair of the committee.

  • by joe_frisch (1366229) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:47PM (#42122941)

    People like this are the reason that scientists need to be very careful to present their data in an unbiased fashion. The temptation to show "simple" or "clear" data that supports something they are sure is true needs to be resisted. Any evidence that the scientists are in any way biasing their data can be used politically to discredit the entire field.

  • by Sparticus789 (2625955) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:47PM (#42122953) Journal

    Define "vast majority of scientists"

    If you want someone who understands science better, then someone like Roscoe Bartlett should not have been voted out of office, given the fact that he holds a PhD is physiology and is a former NASA engineer. Stop voting for politicians, vote for people with real world experience and technical knowledge. Get rid of the lawyers and elect doctors and scientists.

    • by dkleinsc (563838)

      Lawyers deciding scientific matters doesn't make much sense, but neither does doctors deciding matters of war and peace or scientists deciding matters of budgeting. That's one of the major problems in politics: Anyone actually trying to serve their country well (I know, pipe dream, but bear with me) has to make decisions about subjects they know absolutely nothing about.

      Here's what you actually need: People who are smart enough to listen to expert advice about what they don't know, and discerning enough to

  • > When will candidates who are actually qualified to represent science ... be the representatives of science with regard to political decision-making?

    You know that Steven Chu [wikipedia.org] is secretary of energy, right? And that the department of energy has a Basic Energy Sciences division which gets a lot of federal science money?

    And wasn't there a slashdot story about a physicist-turned-congressman lately?

    I mean, yes, I'd like it if it happened more often, and I'm not defending Lamar Smith's qualifications, but it's

  • My apologies. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by game kid (805301) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:54PM (#42123065) Homepage

    To all of Slashdot's out-of-US readers: On behalf of the United States of America, I apologize for this event. I do not live in Smith's Congressional district; nor would I have dare voted that anti-freedom, anti-technology SOPA author and professional monster [wikipedia.org] to Congress (let alone this apparently influential committee position) if I did.

    Smith has left great bruises on the certainty of a free internet and will now leave a great and lasting scar on Science and the Useful Arts. He will not endanger the science of "climate change" or "global warming", he will endanger knowledge itself.

  • by uzd4ce (1916592)

    "When will candidates who are actually qualified to represent science or at a minimum show an interest in it be the representatives of science with regard to political decision-making?"

    When more scientists step up and become congresscritters of course. Until then....

    • by Trepidity (597)

      Well, they'd have to win election too...

    • The Committee on Science, Space and Technology has about as much to do with science as the Book of Genesis does with explaining the origin of the universe. It's a POLITICAL committee.. it is motivated by cash. Period. Just like all other committees. Democrats/Republicans/"Independents"... they're all cash hungry. That's it. I wish it were better, but it isn't. The one or two representatives and senators who understand the Internet and aren't in the back pockets of the *AAs are not connected enough to get on

    • Rush Holt says hi.

  • Apparently.... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dega704 (1454673) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:57PM (#42123093)
    It looks like the GOP doesn't think they have done a thorough enough job of convincing us that they have all either sold out or lost their freaking minds. Or both.
  • Finally, we'll get some sensibility and order to our so-called "science." This man will, by decree, ensure that there is no global warming, that all angles are obtuse - to avoid anyone getting poked - precisely identify how old the universe is, and declare cancer illegal, except in those cases where it brings in money for research companies and drug manufacturers. Oh, happy day! So much uncertainty will be wiped away by legislation. Imaginary numbers will no longer vex us. Glass will be neither a liqui
  • Faith-based science! Well he IS a Christian Scientist. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lamar_S._Smith#Personal_life [wikipedia.org]
  • by jjo (62046) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:18PM (#42123377) Homepage

    The real reason for pushback against the global warmist 'consensus' is that it is frankly both scientific and political. It starts with observations of global climate, and ends up with the undeniable and unquestionable conclusion that First-World governments must do whatever it takes to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions in their countries. The entire chain of reasoning from observation to required government policy has been so sanctified that any one who questions or doubts even the tiniest aspect of it is labeled a "denier", implying that they are just as bad or worse than those who deny the Holucaust.

    It's very puzzling that scientist's predictions of how an imperfectly-understood chaotic system will behave in the future, and recommendations for one particular policy approach to dealing with it, have achieved the inerrant status of Holy Writ, so that those who question any aspect of it must be burned at the stake.

    • by hondo77 (324058)
      It's very puzzling why if 90+% of scientists in a given area of study agree on something, it is accepted as fact except for AGW. Why i$ that, I wonder?
      • Several reasons.

        Climate modeling is exceptionally difficult - it is a nonlinear,not well understood system with hysteresis, that does not allow for controlled experiments. The system contains a lot of low frequency noise which makes statistical analysis of past data unreliable. The studies are complex and difficult, trying to condense the assumptions and results into a form where even a well educated non-expert can understand them is difficult.

        The results of the models are not simple: they do not predict "

  • It would be good to have a skeptic, someone who won't just dive in with spending trillions and curtailing rights every time someone brings up the climate change bogeyman.

    What I am worried about is this guy is in the pocket of the entertainment industry. He wanted to strengthen the DMCA's provision on anti-circumvention software, and this is THE guy who introduced SOPA.

  • I really hate it when the headline isn't even a complete sentence.
  • That's crazy! This is the worst possible person for the job in the whole fucking world! This guy isn't a global warming skeptic, he's an outright, card-carrying denier.

  • http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/20/sopa-withdrawn-lamar-smith_n_1219250.html

    Is that the same lamar smith?
  • The word "skeptic" implies some rational basis for doubt,

    He's a denier.

  • I can see the NSF starting to issue CFPs for researchers to find Noah's Ark. What nobody realizes is that it's in the same warehouse as the Ark of the Covenant.

  • by Genda (560240) <mariet@nOSpAM.got.net> on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @11:22PM (#42126249) Journal

    To all of you, who say great, got a man in a position to ignore Global Warming, I have to ask you. Do you think that's all NASA, EPA, DOE, NSF, NOAA, and the USGS do? Have you even the faintest, vaguest idea how important the work of these organizations are to our day to day life, not to mention the critical future of our nation competing with other nations on maintain some miniscule hint of technological leadership in the rest of this century. Have you any idea what kind of damage a Luddite at the helm of our scientific organization can do you our economic viability or the development of our youth as scientists and engineers in a future which is going to DEMAND technological aptitude.

    And you BOZOs applaud? Apparently Nero fiddling while ROME burned wasn't such a bizarre thing after all.

  • by ArgumentBoy (669152) on Thursday November 29, 2012 @09:33AM (#42128943)
    I met this guy once in a real meeting with genuine conversation. He's actually very bright. He went to Yale for instance. I know that's no guarantee you haven't been infected with some ideology virus, but ask yourself: if you had been to Yale and wanted a lot of red meat eating, capital punishment cheering, cousin marrying Texans to send you to Congress, what sort of stuff would you have to say in public? I really think that thought is at the bottom of a lot of his stuff. I think that he'll be okay as long as the spotlight isn't too bright. We just won't see a lot of progressive science leadership from him.
  • by mark_reh (2015546) on Thursday November 29, 2012 @09:51AM (#42129117) Journal

    Q: When will candidates who are actually qualified to represent science or at a minimum show an interest in it be the representatives of science with regard to political decision-making?"

    A: when hell freezes over

    The US is a nation of dopes. We get the government we deserve, the one we are dumb enough to vote for.

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