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Sigh. Because we certainly don't have anything better to do -- at a time when the economy continues to sag, China is pulling ahead in the next major global industry in clean energy, and climate change is exacerbating extreme weather events the world over -- than to embark on a politically motivated witch hunt. But that's exactly what one GOP Representative wants to do if the Republicans win back control of the House of Reps this fall: pore, once again, into the so-called Climate Gate hacked email event, and 'investigate' the scientists involved. Never mind that those scientists have been exonerated literally 5 times now by various independent panels and investigations -- we need a real spectacle. Here's what could happen: Ecopolitology explains:
While leading scientific bodies conducting multiple independent reviews of the so-called "Climategate" emails have determined that the scientific work and findings of these publicly abused climate scientists are both legitimate and something worth paying attention to, California Rep. Darrell Issa has vowed to make another investigation of "climategate" his top priority if the GOP wins back the House of Representatives and he becomes head of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee in the Fall.So, if a GOP majority leads to Issa becoming the head of the OGR Committee, we can expect to see even more tiresome 'debate' over whether the poorly-worded emails exchanged in private among some scientists is evidence of a devious hoax to fool the world into believing in global warming. I don't know what comes next in that conspiracy theory -- is it the rampant socialism they're seeking to install? I forget ... maybe it was the one-world government designed to strip everyone of their freedoms?
Seriously -- 5 independent investigations and reviews from various bodies around the world all coming to the conclusion that the work done by the scientists in question was and remains to be sound. Continued belief that Climate Gate revealed anything meaningful about hard climate science is essentially continued belief in a conspiracy theory, in the same vein as Truthers, Birthers, Flat-Earthers, and the like. The difference is, this one is a conspiracy that pundits and Fox News egg on (okay, they like the Birther thing too).
So in case you missed them, here are the 5 -- count them, 5 -- various reviews that failed to turn up anything damning about climate science in the emails or the research in general:
- House of Commons Science and Technology Committee
- Internal Investigation at Penn State University
- National Independent Review Panel in the UK
- 255 members of the National Academy of Sciences
- Science Assessment Panel
Of course, no amount of review or investigation will quell conspiracy theorists, who have their minds made up, and will only accept an outcome that meets their pre-established worldview: Namely, that climate change is a great big hoax. Meanwhile, of course, we're on track to register the hottest year in recorded history, and extreme weather events like heatwaves and flooding are wracking the globe.
That Representative Issa plans on getting back into this largely ridiculous affair is at best a huge waste of time -- a counterproductive, resource-draining affront to science when there is serious work to be done actually addressing climate change.
More on So-called Climate Gate
And " Climate Gate " Will Henceforth Be Known As . . .
The Danger of Armchair Pundits 'Investigating' Climate Science
WTF is Palin Talking About? Says "Gore- Gate " Revealed "Snake Oil Science"
Virginia Attorney General Conducts Witch Hunt on Climate Gate