Saturday, March 07, 2015

194.6 - Clown Award: James Inhofe

Clown Award: James Inhofe

Now for our other regular feature, the Clown Award, given in recognition of meritorious stupidity.

This week, the Big Red Nose goes to a man whose actual middle name, Mountain, is appropriate because he has rocks in his head, a man who is definitely from the wrong state because he surely is not OK, Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe.

Last week he came on to the Senate floor and proceeded to take a snowball out of a plastic bag and declare that because he was able to gather that snowball outside the Capitol, because it was unseasonably cold in DC, that meant that global warming was a hoax.

He went on to cite National Weather Service records showing 67 new record lows in the two days preceding in the eastern US, where overnight lows have indeed been 30-40 degrees below normal in a number of places from Indiana to New England. Inhofe declared this means that "the script has flipped" on global warming.

James Inhofe
What kind of abominable ignorance, what kind of willful numbskullery does it take for Inhofe, the chair of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, what kind of inanity does it take for someone in that position to still not get the difference between weather and climate?

Weather is short-term and local; climate is neither. But even just considering weather, Inhofe is a dolt. At the same time that a bunch of places in the eastern US were setting record lows, and even greater number of places in the western US were setting record highs. The National Climatic Data Center reported that for the period of December 2014 to January 2015, the average temperature for the US as a whole was nearly 3.5 degrees Fahrenheit, nearly two degrees Celsius, above normal.

But I will emphasize again, that is just two months worth of data. That's weather. The point here is, even arguing on his terms, Inhofe is a twit.

Sheldon Whitehouse
Honor for the best slapdown of Senator RocksInHisHead, though, goes to Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, who said - at considerably greater length and with much more detail, but in sum, he said among other examples that we can believe NASA, the US Navy, which regards global warming as its greatest security challenge, a long string of major corporations, which consider it a serious economic threat, every single major US scientific society, or, as he riffed after each example in just these words, "or we can believe the senator with the snowball."

At a time when the evidence not just of climate change but of actual, current, destructive effects of climate change, including one report that suggests that the California drought is due to climate change and another that says the four-year long drought in Syria that sparked the civil war that has killed thousands was also the result of climate change, fables and fantasies like Inhofe's are literally dangerous to human survival and are literally costing thousands of people their lives.

James Inhofe is a waste of space, a jackass, an embarrassment to the nation, and possibly the world's biggest clown.

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