The Crackpot Caucus

Timothy Egan nails it, the Republican caucus is composed of crackpots and cranks.

Take a look around key committees of the House and you’ll find a governing body stocked with crackpots whose views on major issues are as removed from reality as Missouri’s Representative Todd Akin’s take on the sperm-killing powers of a woman who’s been raped.

On matters of basic science and peer-reviewed knowledge, from evolution to climate change to elementary fiscal math, many Republicans in power cling to a level of ignorance that would get their ears boxed even in a medieval classroom. Congress incubates and insulates these knuckle-draggers.

He then goes on to cite multiple examples of what should be career-fatal stupidity that has been routinely ignored and inadequately mocked in the media. My favorite?

Barton cited the Almighty in questioning energy from wind turbines. Careful, he warned, “wind is God’s way of balancing heat.” Clean energy, he said, “would slow the winds down” and thus could make it hotter. You never know.

“You can’t regulate God!” Barton barked at the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, in the midst of discussion on measures to curb global warming.

I think we need to thank Akin again. He managed to say something so grotesquely stupid, so insanely backwards in terms of its scientific validity and misogyny that we’re actually seeing dialogue about scientific illiteracy in congress again. Perhaps his comments were the straw that broke the camel’s back?

Comments

  1. #1 Shakatany
    August 24, 2012

    These American versions of Lysenkoism (and look what that did to the Soviet Union) seems to be rife in the GOP (Gross Old Party). Hopefully they will not succeed in November as they truly are sabotaging the future of this country.

  2. […] The Crackpot Caucus [denialism blog] (scienceblogs.com) […]

  3. #3 Chris Hoofnagle
    August 25, 2012

    oh Mark, you are way too optimistic.

    No one in this world, so far as I know–and I have researched the record for years, and employed agents to help me–has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of plain people. Nor has anyone ever lost public office thereby.
    -H. L. Mencken

  4. #4 uknowispeaksense
    August 25, 2012

    If Romney with his magic underpants and his backward mates gain control of your country, you will not only have a weird sort of theocracy but your country will become a laughing stock as you step boldly into the 1950’s.

  5. #5 Narad
    August 26, 2012

    An idle question: Has anyone actually tried to “back up” Akin with the “your system has to (immunologically) get used to the sperm” angle?

  6. #6 JBC
    August 28, 2012

    Lately I’ve begun to be glad that I’m old (and closer to not having any of it matter anymore).

  7. #7 GeorgeH
    Lebanon
    September 1, 2012

    Does this really event matter? Republican or Democrat they are both leading the United States into countless wars based on lies and fabrication of evidence. They constantly try to overthrow other nations and incite instability in various regions.

    From Ragan to Obama there were Democrat and Republican presidents and they all had the same goal but went about it using different means. So does it really matter if one believes some crap and other not when in reality they’re both as guilty as the other when it comes to foreign policy.

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