Senate committee to science: Drop dead

Earlier this week I wrote a column about the downright mean and nasty way that conservatives in the General Assembly are governing our state these days. Over and over during the last 18 months, the people in power have displayed an utter contempt for process and the right of people who differ with them to be heard.

Today, another sad chapter in this story of aggressive know-nothingism was written in the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources. It occurred during a discussion of the embarrassing bill advanced by global warming deniers that would attempt to tell scientists which data they can and cannot use to make projections about sea-level rise — an issue that could well impact the very survival of our species.

After spending all of about 10 minutes on the bill, the chairman of the committee, Senator Don East (pictured above) was asked if it would be possible for an actual scientific expert on the subject, Prof. Rob Jackson of Duke University to address the committee. East’s offensive and harebrained reply was as follows: “A couple of minutes, it’s lunchtime, we’re tired, wanna’ get out of here, make it quick.” (WRAL has a video of the whole embarrassing meeting that you can watch by clicking here.)

East, you will recall, is the same person who bragged on the Senate floor last year about a fun-filled night of illegal 145 m.p.h. driving on public highways.

It’s enough to make you think that writers for Stephen Colbert and other national comedians might just want to hire a permanent stringer in Raleigh to monitor the General Assembly for asinine comments and behavior. Indeed, based on the actions of the last couple weeks, it might take two or three people to handle such a  job.


  1. frances

    June 7, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    Cheap Shot by Rob

  2. Frank Burns

    June 7, 2012 at 7:39 pm

    This so called climate science is not the way science is traditionally done. It has swerved into advocacy for controlling CO2 emissions. Why do NOAA scientists feel that they need adjust the temperatures of the past downward? http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/06/06/noaas-national-climatic-data-center-caught-cooling-the-past-modern-processed-records-dont-match-paper-records/

    The General Assembly is a lot wiser than you give them credit.

  3. Frances Jenkins

    June 7, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Martin Nesbitt was very rude on four different times to fellow members of the Senate. But that is okay with you.How this nonprofit operates is beyond the my understanding of nonprofits

    I was very impressed with Senator Stein’s presentation on fracking. If only he had told Elizabeth Edwards the truth about John he would be a US Senator instead of Kay.

  4. Rob Schofield

    June 7, 2012 at 9:01 pm

    We’ve missed you Frances. Frank – not so much.

  5. Frank Burns

    June 7, 2012 at 9:12 pm

    The truth has a sting to it, doesn’t it?

  6. david esmay

    June 8, 2012 at 9:53 am

    Frank, you keep citing a conspiracy theorist/tv meteorologist with no credibility, what’s up with that? The Right’s view, wrong as usual, is, that if real science doesn’t support your twisted ideology, simply lie or make facts up.

  7. Frank Burns

    June 8, 2012 at 10:43 am

    David, please stick to the facts and not urban mythology. I’m dismayed at the near religious devotion that the left has for their twisted beliefs on climate change. The fact is NOAA has been adjusting the temperatures of the past downward. As Casey Stengel used to say, “you can look it up.”

  8. Frank Burns

    June 8, 2012 at 11:29 am

    CU satellite data along the coast of North Carolina shows no change in sea level so far this century. But Scientific American says that all scientists agree that sea level is going to rise by more than a metre before the end of the century.

    Look at the data, don’t accept everything the scientists tell you.http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2012/06/02/scientific-american-considers-making-telling-the-truth-illegal/

  9. gregflynn

    June 8, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    Of course it’s flat Frank. The coordinates given in the chart locate a point on dry land.

  10. Greg Flynn

    June 8, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    Instead of the spin of a “conspiracy theorist/tv meteorologist with no credibility” read the original post by Christopher Burt about temperature averages including a rebuttal of the climate-change denier’s erroneous interpretation and selective quotation

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