Pardon my French, but you really can’t make this shit up.
The headline says it all: “House Passes Bill that Prohibits Expert Scientific Advice to the EPA.”
While everyone’s attention was focused on the Senate and the Keystone XL decision on Tuesday, some pretty shocking stuff was quietly going on in the House of Representatives. The GOP-dominated House passed a bill that effectively prevents scientists who are peer-reviewed experts in their field from providing advice — directly or indirectly — to the EPA, while at the same time allowing industry representatives with financial interests in fossil fuels to have their say.
Andrew Rosenberg is Director of the Union of Concerned Scientists; he wrote a letter to House Representatives stating what should be obvious to any sentient being:
“This [bill] effectively turns the idea of conflict of interest on its head, with the bizarre presumption that corporate experts with direct financial interests are not conflicted while academics who work on these issues are. Of course, a scientist with expertise on topics the Science Advisory Board addresses likely will have done peer-reviewed studies on that topic. That makes the scientist’s evaluation more valuable, not less.”
Two more bills relating to the EPA were set to go to the vote this week, bills that opponents argue are part of an “unrelenting partisan attack” on the EPA.
It isn’t just an attack on the EPA–it is part of an all-out attack on science, reason and scholarship. The U.S. House is a deeply anti-intellectual collection of Know-Nothings, proud of their ignorance and nativism. (We don’t need no smarty-pants scientists telling us the world is older than 6000 years….)
They’d repeal the Enlightenment–if they’d ever heard of it.
Be very afraid.