Dispatches from the Creation Wars

As Ed blogged soon after last November’s election, climate denialist Rep. Shimkus* was a leading contender for Chairman of the Committee on Energy and Commerce who ultimately crafts energy and climate policy for the House of Representatives. I reported here Tuesday that Mr. Shimkus* lost his bid for that role to Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI). However incoming-Chairman Upton has assigned Shimkus* to chair the Environment and Economy Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over both our energy policy and energy-related regulatory framework such as the Clean Air Act.

U.S. House Representative John Shimkus (R-IL) is the loon’s loon’s loon’s loon – four deep into loonery. He arrogantly denies climate change without first understanding the science behind it, which on its own merely makes him a typical denialist once again illustrating the Dunning-Krueger effect. However his approach to perceiving reality also requires that he test his own uninformed and misinformed perceptions about what science understands to what he believes the Bible has to say about the matter (1). As idiotic and delusional as that is given we’ve falsified the global flood myth for the period the Noah story takes place in the Bible, it gets far worse. Given Rep. Shimkus’ near-complete ignorance regarding climate science he holds a completely misinformed perception of science’s predictions regarding global warming, that fuels his false perception that the Noah story in the Bible offers a rebuttal to the predictions the climate science community makes in its synthesis reports when in fact the Noah story does not reconcile. Rep. Shimkus’s misperception being that he falsely believes scientific consensus predicts a global flood which will “destroy the earth”. (2, 3, 4)

Unfortunately this story’s entertainment value comes at a severe cost where it appears near certain the next two years will be dark days for reality advocates who promote crucial policies based on what science understands rather than how morons misinterpret the Bible. What’s also interesting is that Rep. Shimkus’* policy rejection for mitigation due to global warming is premised on the same argument used by astroturf-financed religious right leaders in the denialist video I posted about last Sunday titled, Resisting the Green Dragon; that is that assigning the costs to mitigate the damage due to climate change to greenhouse gas producers and their consumers is unconscionable since it will harm the poor.

There’s also some really defective logic going on here which could further constrain believers such as Rep. Shimkus from accepting reality if the evidence for global warming increases and becomes more threatening to our wellbeing. Suppose the scientific consensus eventually comes to accept the Venus Syndrome notion (I’m not sure this is even a hypothesis yet, from my perspective it’s merely a notion); that would arguably directly rebut the Noah story’s predictions. Are we to conclude that if science’s developing predictions became ever more catastrophic, the level of denialism by denialist biblical inerrantists would increase? It appears so.

1) Rep. Shimkus statements in the House of Representative:

2) This is the passage Shimkus falsely claims rebuts the climate science community’s predictions; Genesis 8:20 – 22 [RSV]::

20 Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. 21 And when the LORD smelled the pleasing odor, the LORD said in his heart, “I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I ever again destroy every living creature as I have done. 22 While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.”

2) While Rep. Shimkus did not reference this passage, it’s part of the Bible’s Noah story which also makes predictions that again do not correlate to currently held consensus predictions – Genesis 9:1 – 17 [RSV]:

1 And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. 2 The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every bird of the air, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea; into your hand they are delivered. 3 Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you; and as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything. 4 Only you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. 5 For your lifeblood I will surely require a reckoning; of every beast I will require it and of man; of every man’s brother I will require the life of man. 6 Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for God made man in his own image. 7 And you, be fruitful and multiply, bring forth abundantly on the earth and multiply in it.” 8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, 9 “Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your descendants after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the cattle, and every beast of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark. 11 I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” 12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: 13 I set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 When the bow is in the clouds, I will look upon it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.” 17 God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.”

4) IPCC Fourth Assessment Report – Working Group I: Chapter 10, Global Climate Projections

*Originally misspelled as Shimus rather than the correct Shimkus.