US taxpayers on the hook for Senator Inhofe's conspiracy theories

US taxpayers on the hook for Senator Inhofe's conspiracy theories
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Much like trusting your mechanic when he says you need new brakes or a doctor when he tells you that your cholesterol is too high, you would hope that elected officials would listen to the experts in a particular field when it comes to developing common sense government policies.

On the issue of global warming, that is happening now for the vast majority of the world’s leaders and their political colleagues. Even former US president George W. Bush came to be convinced of the need to action on global warming. Pretty hard not to be when you consider the mountains of evidence produced, tested and re-tested by scientists at top institutes like NASA, the Royal Society and the American Academy of Sciences.

And President Obama needs no convincing, nor does his Energy Secretary Steven Chu. Today, the Nobel-prize winning Chu said that, “California could lose all its agriculture by the end of the century, and that a number of its cities are also in peril due to worsening global warming.”

The Los Angeles Times reported that Chu said the state’s award-winning vineyards, as well its farms, could be wiped out in the starkest warning yet from the Obama administration.

“I don’t think the American public has gripped in its gut what could happen,” Chu said. “We’re looking at a scenario where there’s no more agriculture in California,” adding, “I don’t actually see how they can keep their cities going.”

This is where the waste of taxpayer’s dollars comes in in the form of Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) who continues to spend his days ignoring the expertise of the best in the field and grasping onto a delusion that he and his handful of conspiracy theorists are somehow “winning,” as if science is a high school popularity contest.

Inhofe’s response to Chu’s concern over California’s water issues was:

“I am hopeful Secretary Chu will take note of the real-world data, new studies and the growing chorus of international scientists that question his climate claims.”

Real world data? New studies? You would think that Chu would have heard of such things given his career as a scientist. Looking for evidence of this “real world data” I took a look through Inhofe’s blog on the Environment and Public Works website, run by his political assistant Marc Morano.

Far from being a source of data, Inhofe’s blog serves as a wonderful chronology of delusion. You also get a good idea of just how much time (and money) Inhofe’s office is dumping into this effort to fulfill Inhofe’s foregone conclusion that global warming is nothing more than a giant conspiracy.

I’m interested in whether the American public is okay with their taxpayer money going into this claptrap? In particular, I am wondering how people in California feel about a taxpayer sponsored effort to obscure the realities of global warming, which scientists are saying will have devastating effects on their very livelihood in the near future.

US taxpayers on the hook for Senator Inhofe's conspiracy theories

Kevin is a contributor and strategic adviser to DeSmogBlog.

He runs the digital marketing agency Spake Media House. Named a “Green Hero” by Rolling Stone Magazine and one of the “Top 50 Tweeters” on climate change and environment issues, Kevin has appeared in major news media outlets around the world for his work on digital campaigning.

Kevin has been involved in the public policy arena in both the United States and Canada for more than a decade. For five years he was the managing editor of DeSmogBlog.com. In this role, Kevin’s research into the “climate denial industry” and the right-wing think tank networks was featured in news media articles around the world. He is most well known for his ground-breaking research into David and Charles Koch’s massive financial investments in the Republican and tea party networks.

Kevin is the first person to be designated a “Certified Expert” on the political and community organizing platform NationBuilder.

Prior to DeSmogBlog, Kevin worked in various political and government roles. He was Senior Advisor to the Minister of State for Multiculturalism and a Special Assistant to the Minister of State for Asia Pacific, Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada. Kevin also worked in various roles in the British Columbia provincial government in the Office of the Premier and the Ministry of Health.

In 2008 Kevin co-founded a groundbreaking new online election tool called Vote for Environment which was later nominated for a World Summit Award in recognition of the world’s best e-Content and innovative ICT applications.

Kevin moved to Washington, DC in 2010 where he worked for two years as the Director of Online Strategy for Greenpeace USA and has since returned to his hometown of Vancouver, Canada.

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