I can’t help but feeling like being Senator Jim Inhofe is good work if you could get it. He brought a snowball to a science-fight. He is impervious to how dumb that is. I can’t imagine having a job anywhere on this planet where handling a snowball is supposed to invalidate all the points regarding global warming. Only in the legislative branch of these United States, I guess. Yay (um, no) us (no, we are not worthy)!
So for a quick and meaningful primer—yes, seasons still exist with global warming, and winters will still be the coldest of the seasons. It is possible that global warming has fuxxored the gulf stream in such a way that cold and stormy is the new normal for the East Coast, which includes Washington DC and Philadelphia, so fuck you, global warming!
The following questions I’d like to posit for Senator Inhofe are:
Do you think anyone ever implied that global warming meant there wouldn’t be winter anymore?
Is the freezing point of water supposed to change in any way? (Show your work.)
What do you think of heat waves, like the ones Australia generally has while we US East Coast folks are wrapped up in snow?
Might I suggest that Senator Inhofe should go and investigate the Australian heat, perhaps locate a forest fire, and figure out whether he’d survive longer than a snowball therein? Or is my general disdain for his lack of knowledge transparent enough?
Of course, the sort of people who burn people would also burn books. A group like ISIS that depends on the most narrow interpretation of religion is threatened by learning and the mere existence of anything that counters their cramped worldview. But no matter how many books are burned, more are always being written. It still angers me to see people try to blot out history and culture in this way, though.
I feel a little like a heel picking on poor ole Pat, but I can’t help recording a dis on yoga that is remarkably, um. Hm.
I like yoga and meditation myself. I am in theory an atheist and in practice a Buddhist. I sit in half or full lotus most of the time, because it is very comfortable for my back, you understand (arthritis problems). I meditate because I am insomnia-and-anxiety-prone and finding my center keeps me on an even rational keel. I am familiar with some Buddhist mantras derived from Sanskrit but filtered through the Tibetan practices that I learned my little bit of yoga from. I am going to state something that is probably obvious to you, that is not obvious to Pat or Pat-like persons.
I read things. And if I read about a mantra—I also study it, because why would it mean anything if I didn’t? People educated in critical thinking want to understand why they say or do things. At least, they should. Robertson is taking for granted that people on a spiritual journey are unqualified to understand why they are making that journey, and how they will relate to what they find. But yoga derives from the same root idea as “religion” does—unification. There isn’t anything spiritually less-than in “hindu” or “Sanskrit” coming out of a yoga-inclined mouth. This beef seems really weird. But the idea that yoga makes people “speak in tongues” is funny. There are other people who spoke in tongues…
Vixen, you may be thinking, the problem? Texas Congressman Lamar Smith is certainly “a” problem, but he can’t actually be “the” problem all by himself?
And you would be right, Dear Reader, because no one person is, all by themselves, the whole entire problem. He is just a profound example of the problem. One of the best examples. And no, not just because he’s one of those science-denying, fossil-fuel industry paid-for seat warmers. Although that’s totally true. It’s because he doesn’t believe anything he doesn’t want to—and here’s some proof, via Right Wing Watch, do be a love and click the link. Here’s some of what he said, though:
“One might hope that he would be a little bit more responsive and a little bit more assertive and, frankly, trying to assert American power and provide weapons to individuals who are our allies, for example, or take actions to stop the atrocities that are occurring, or support other nations that are doing more than we are. But the president is doing none of these things,” Smith continued.
Technically, there really ought not be a religious “litmus test” when it comes to achieving any elected office. It honestly should not matter whether our current president, Barack Hussein Obama, is a Christian, as he actually professed publically many times over and witnessed to as a member of Trinity United Church for 20 years, is a practitioner of Islam, having some incidental relationship with that faith having a father and stepfather who were in some respects Muslim, or even as I am, an intellectually inquisitive militant agnostic. The First Amendment technically means that everyone is free to worship as they will, and does not deny anyone their rights because of some heterodoxy. This needs to be understood as part of a long tradition within US history, where Islam was considered among many religions as part of the experiment in allowing such a freedom of thought.
(Contra David Barton, who is an idiot, and is about as much an historian as I am an Olympic Decathlete. Even setting aside Thomas Jefferson’s Koran, or his Iftar Dinner with representatives from Tunis, the reality is that the Islamic nation of Morocco first recognized the US as an independent nation and that the Treaty of Tripoli declared us as “by no means a Christian nation”. Islam was definitely a part of the Founders’ consideration of what religious freedom might mean. For that matter, the willingness to cast the US as having no part in Islam because the Islamists were the people who sold slaves to “us”—quite elides the actual fact that many of those slaves were also of the Muslim faith, and that supposedly “good” Christians willingly bought and held those human beings for generations. In other words, there were many Muslims here denied the right to practice their faith, as they were in every respects also denied their other freedoms, and it was because Christians did not mind any bit of that for a very long time, as their book never gave them a solid reason to. A very bad word I might say to David Barton for trying to erase that very real history. You can not remedy the enormity of slavery by disappearing the history of the people who were actually held in bondage, and you can not defend our founders by denying the shit they actually did. I’m sorry real history is inconvenient to paste-eaters like Barton, but whoop, there it is.)
The reason “liberal” or “mainstream media” ask a drowsy-eyed Koch-whore like Scott Walker a truly philosophical question like whether evolution is real or whether Obama is a Christian, is sort of a litmus test in whether he tracks to reality. Is he so completely a puppet that he can’t answer simple questions without being backstopped by a PR team?
Well, regarding evolution, he punted. When faced with the question regarding the current president’s allegiance, he also sort of punted. He “does not know” because he never read anything regarding the controversy—how Palinesque! I have exactly zero faith in anyone who can claim they do not know why they are being asked either question, and have no response. He doesn’t know if he is required to pander to the tea party assholes or has to be at least somewhat real. He hesitated because of alliances. That is so chickenshit. I neither know nor care what Walker believes, because he doesn’t hisownself. I just don’t think he ever should be president.