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Thursday, March 29, 2007

Global Warming Scientists Charges Bush of Nazi Tactics

I was cruising to see what Reverend X had been up to lately, and found his link to an article by the latimes.,1,1206407.story?coll=la-headlines-nation&ctrack=1&cset=true
Scientist accuses White House of 'Nazi' tactics
By Joel Havemann, Times Staff Writer
1:05 PM PDT, March 19, 2007
James Hansen click to enlarge
Related - White House Report on Global Warming
Related Stories - To find a witness list see the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform site - Carmakers fight warming suit - Conservation may limit global warming - Senate to turn up heat on gov. to fight global warming - Climate change laps at Bangladesh's shores - Energy CEOs encourage emissions caps - Business schools warming to environmental concerns - Updating Bush's spin on climate change - Deal with warming, don't debate it, scientists warn - Climate is changing, politically
WASHINGTON -- A government scientist, under sharp questioning by a federal panel for his outspoken views on global warming, stood by his view today that the Bush administration's information policies smacked of Nazi Germany. James Hansen, director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, took particular issue with the administration's rule that a government information officer listen in on his interviews with reporters and its refusal to allow him to be interviewed by National Public Radio.
"This is the United States," Hansen told the House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee. "We do have freedom of speech here." But Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista) said it was reasonable for Hansen's employer to ask him not to state views publicly that contradicted administration policy.
"I am concerned that many scientists are increasingly engaging in political advocacy and that some issues of science have become increasingly partisan as some politicians sense that there is a political gain to be found on issues like stem cells, teaching evolution and climate change," Issa said. Hansen said the Bush administration was not the first in U.S. history to practice information management over government scientists, but it has been the most vigorous.
He deplored a "politicization of science.""When I testify to you as a government scientist," he said, "why does my testimony have to be reviewed, edited and changed by a bureaucrat in the White House?" Sitting beside him was one of the bureaucrats Hansen was talking about: Philip Cooney, chief of staff to the White House Council on Environmental Quality from 2001 to 2005.
Cooney, an official of the American Petroleum Institute before going to the White House, acknowledged having reviewed some of Hansen's testimony as part of a long-standing practice designed to result in consistency. Cooney was asked about changing "will" to "may" in prepared testimony describing the impact of human activity--particularly the burning of oil and coal--on the Earth's temperature. He said his edits were based not on political views but a 2001 report by the National Academy of Sciences."I offered my comments in good-faith reliance on what I understood to be authoritative and current use of the state of scientific knowledge, and for no other purpose," Cooney said.
Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) didn't buy that. He said the basis of Cooney's editing changes was not scientific evidence but "loyalty to a person who had appointed you to a political position." Some of the sharpest exchanges came between Reps. Henry A. Waxman (D-Los Angeles), chairman of the committee, and a Republican member, Mark Souder of Indiana. Souder said the Democrats' approach made "a mockery of the hearing process."
["Cooney, an official of the American Petroleum Institute before going to the White House..." Another instance of a fox being placed to guard the hen house, one of Bush's favorite ploys.WA]



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