Republicans Show Increase In Ignorance Of Climate Change With One GOP Leader Quoting Bible Instead of Scientific Evidence

It’s long been clear that the more people watch Fox the dumber they get. While this has been demonstrated many times, it can be seen again in a recent Pew Research Center survey which showed that Republicans are even less likely to accept the scientific consensus on climate change than they were in the past:

A 53%-majority of Republicans say there is no solid evidence the earth is warming. Among Tea Party Republicans, fully 70% say there is no evidence. Disbelief in global warming in the GOP is a recent occurrence. Just a few years ago, in 2007, a 62%-majority of Republicans said there is solid evidence of global warming, while less than a third (31%) said there is no solid evidence. Currently, just 38% of Republicans say there is solid evidence the earth is warming, and only 16% say that warming is caused by human activity. In 2007, three-in-ten Republicans said global warming was the result of human activity. Also, by nearly a two-to-one margin, Republicans say scientists do not agree that the earth is getting warmer because of human activity. Few Republicans see global warming as a very serious problem (14%) or in need of immediate government action (24%).

This is sad, but hardly surprising as it has long been obvious that Republicans, especially those in the Tea Party, have no concept of independent thought or fact checking. They fall in line to repeat whatever falsehoods are currently being spread on the right. Many conservatives continue to believe that Saddam threatened us with WMD and/or was involved in the 9/11 attack. Many believe that creationism (or intelligent design) is a valid alternative view to evolution. Many even believe that transparent lies of the Swift Boaters in 2004 and the Birthers in more recent years. Steve Benen provided additional examples:

This happens more than it should. If I had to guess, if you asked regular ol’ Republican voters several years ago whether the United States should engage in torture, they probably would have said no. But then their party told them to change their mind, and they did. If you asked these GOP voters whether a health care mandate, in line with Republican proposals, was a reasonable policy, they probably would have said yes. But then their party told them to change their mind, and they did.

Some who deny the scientific on climate change will repeat the pseudo-science spread by the petroleum industry. The Toronto Star recently reported on an even more extreme view from the religious right:

U.S. Representative John Shimkus, possible future chairman of the Congressional committee that deals with energy and its attendant environmental concerns, believes that climate change should not concern us since God has already promised not to destroy the Earth.

Shimkus, an evangelical Christian and a Republican member of the House from Illinois, on Tuesday signalled his desire to become chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

The Energy and Commerce committee is among the most powerful in the U.S. Congress, with a wide-ranging purview over legislation touching on energy policy, environmental initiatives and public health.

Shimkus already serves on the committee. During a hearing in 2009, he dismissed the dangers of climate change and the warnings of the scientific community by quoting the Bible.

First, he noted God’s post-Flood promise to Noah in Genesis 8:21-22.

Never again will I curse the ground because of man, even though all inclinations of his heart are evil from childhood and never again will I destroy all living creatures as I have done.

“As long as the earth endures, seed time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, will never cease.”

“I believe that’s the infallible word of God, and that’s the way it’s going to be for his creation,” Shimkus said.

Then he quoted Matthew 24:31.

And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds from one end of the heavens to the other.”

“The Earth will end only when God declares it’s time to be over. Man will not destroy this Earth. This Earth will not be destroyed by a Flood,” Shimkus asserted. “I do believe that God’s word is infallible, unchanging, perfect.”

Following the Republican wave in the recent Congressional elections, the committee will shift from Democratic to Republican leadership.

On Tuesday, Shimkus sent a letter to his colleagues burnishing his credentials by saying he is “uniquely qualified among a group of talented contenders to lead the Energy and Commerce Committee.”

Why bother reviewing scientific data when you have the Bible to quote. It is scary that this is the party which many voters were willing to return to power.

Quote of the Day

“Palin says they do a lot of huntin’, a lot of hikin’, and a lot of fishin’. I won’t be watchin’.” –David Letterman on Sarah Palin’s new show.

Bonus quote:

“President Obama has a children’s book. It’s called, ‘How the Grinch Stole the Midterm Elections.'” –David Letterman