Sarah Palin Pitching Reality Television Show

There has been increased talk lately about reality television shows being pushed by Sarah Palin:

Sarah Palin, TV producer? Multiple sources confirm that Palin and uber-reality show producer Mark Burnett have been making the rounds in Hollywood this week to pitch a TV docudrama about Alaska. One source called it a “planet-Earth type look” at Palin’s home state. The former candidate for the vice presidency was seen leaving ABC today with Burnett, and an insider confirmed that she met with reality topper Mike Darnell yesterday at Fox (where she and her family ended the day by visiting American Idol.Palin stayed in the green room).  She also stopped by CBS today and plans to meet with NBC Universal TV Chairman Jeff Gaspin tomorrow.

When asked about the meeting, one executive quipped, “she’s pitching a sequel to Commander in Chief,” a reference to the ABC drama from Rod Lurie that starred Geena Davis as the first female president.

Wasilla, Alaska, the methamphetamine capital of Alaska, might make a good setting for a reality television show. It could be a dystopian version of Northern Exposure.

I was promoting Sarah Palin for a reality television show back in October–a vice presidiential candidate version of What Not To Wear. The post was written in response to the revelations as to how much Sarah Palin was spending on clothing at the expense of the Republican National Committee.

Palin appeared on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno earlier this week. I discussed the appearance here.

Attacks On Science From The Right

The New York Times has an article on creationists taking up global warming denialism:

Critics of the teaching of evolution in the nation’s classrooms are gaining ground in some states by linking the issue to global warming, arguing that dissenting views on both scientific subjects should be taught in public schools.

In Kentucky, a bill recently introduced in the Legislature would encourage teachers to discuss “the advantages and disadvantages of scientific theories,” including “evolution, the origins of life, global warming and human cloning.”

There is really nothing new here. The issue isn’t one of beliefs on individual issues such as evolution or climate change. The real question is whether one accepts the scientific method as the most reliable and objective way to study the universe around us, or if they prefer to place their religious and ideological beliefs over the facts.

The article notes the lack of scientific controversy over these issues:

For mainstream scientists, there is no credible challenge to evolutionary theory. They oppose the teaching of alternative views like intelligent design, the proposition that life is so complex that it must be the design of an intelligent being. And there is wide agreement among scientists that global warming is occurring and that human activities are probably driving it. Yet many conservative evangelical Christians assert that both are examples of scientists’ overstepping their bounds…

Lawrence M. Krauss, a physicist who directs the Origins Initiative at Arizona State University and has spoken against efforts to water down the teaching of evolution to school boards in Texas and Ohio, described the move toward climate-change skepticism as a predictable offshoot of creationism.

“Wherever there is a battle over evolution now,” he said, “there is a secondary battle to diminish other hot-button issues like Big Bang and, increasingly, climate change. It is all about casting doubt on the veracity of science — to say it is just one view of the world, just another story, no better or more valid than fundamentalism.”

Adding climate change as a target is strategically beneficial to those hostile to science on the right. It helps circumvent legal decisions that their attempts to teach creationism represents a violation of separation of church and state. They remain wrong in their attacks on the scientific methods, but an attack on science itself might does not raise the same legal problems as promoting teaching of creationism alone.