On Michael Steele's 'Cooling Process'

By Sheril Kirshenbaum | March 20, 2009 4:30 pm

Several readers have emailed me to comment on Michael Steele’s ummmm…imaginative explanations of both global ‘cooling‘ and Greenland:

“We are cooling. We are not warming. The warming you see out there, the supposed warming, and I am using my finger quotation marks here, is part of the cooling process. Greenland, which is now covered in ice, it was once called Greenland for a reason, right? Iceland, which is now green. Oh I love this. Like we know what this planet is all about. How long have we been here? How long? No very long.”

You want me to respond to that gibberish? Seriously? The man got the history of Greenland wrong… need I really wax poetic on the rest? It’s not a question of ‘what this planet is all about‘, but rather what planet is the RNC Chairman on?

My take is that I’m embarrassed for the Republicans. No, I may not always agree with their policies, but in terms of who is representing their image right now, surely they can do so much better


Comments (18)

  1. Derick

    This reads more like SNL than news. Embarrassing and sad.

  2. D. C. Sessions

    in terms of who is representing their image right now, surely they can do so much better.

    Unfortunately, no. In fact, Mr. Steele is almost certainly too close to reality for the Party leadership. His remaining time as chairman is short.

  3. Jon Winsor

    How do these people walk around the halls of power and never run into anyone who’s informed? Not all the GOP is completely clueless (climate change at least gets recognition as a problem on David Frum’s blog). Don’t any of these people with a clue talk to George Will? Or Mary Matlin?

  4. Just when you thought the Republican War on Science was over….

  5. D. C. Sessions

    Not all the GOP is completely clueless (climate change at least gets recognition as a problem on David Frum’s blog).

    That wasn’t very wise. No telling how long he can get away with it.

    Don’t any of these people with a clue talk to George Will? Or Mary Matlin?

    Besides the whole persona non grata thing, there’s the simple matter of prudence: these people have power in the Party, and the less power the Party has the less outlet they have outside of it.

  6. I am extremely heartened by this development because Chris now has every reason to write a sequel.

  7. I don’t think gibberish deserves the brain-power of a response.

  8. Linda

    Sadly, the reality is that the Republicans CANNOT do so much better.
    They are in a total disarray, at a huge deficit, and this is it..

  9. Erasmussimo

    There’s some consolation in this. With each passing year, the evidence in favor of AGW just keeps piling up higher and higher, and it’s starting to show in ways that people can relate to. The recent fires in Australia cannot be definitively attributed to AGW, but as we get more and more stories of forest fires (and the process has already begin in the American West), and stories of problems with the Alaska pipeline because of thawing permafrost, and so forth, I think that more and more people will conclude that the AGW deniers are totally out of touch with reality.

  10. Jon Winsor

    Frum likes David Cameron, Rush Limbaugh not so much (he had a Newsweek cover story on the subject recently). Looks like he’s trying to do some sort of insurrection. Chris, if you’re looking for Republican allies, a number of his blog posters seem science friendly.

  11. Jon Winsor

    Sorry, a bit melodramatic, but yes, science friendly Republicans. They do exist.

  12. What you’re saying is that Michael Steele has been suckered by an 1100 year old real estate scam? If so, does the RNC have a real estate division — I’ve got some land for sale. It’s a new housing development in Florida called “Aqua Terra.”

  13. Erasmussimo

    Sorry, a bit melodramatic, but yes, science friendly Republicans. They do exist.
    Wow! That’s fascinating! At what zoo can I go see them?

    Sorry, cheap shot.

  14. totalrecall

    Sweet Jesus. The stupidity just does not stop with the GOP. My bigger worry is that they never even correct themselves and/or think it is important to set the record straight. Fox news viewers are the most ill-informed bunch of people and it just makes me sad that Republicans don’t seem to value process, science or facts. Just hating Democrats is apparently enough. Shoot first an ask qustions later. Make false statements and then never correct them. This is your GOP. Tragic.


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About Sheril Kirshenbaum

Sheril Kirshenbaum is a research scientist with the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austin's Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy where she works on projects to enhance public understanding of energy issues as they relate to food, oceans, and culture. She is involved in conservation initiatives across levels of government, working to improve communication between scientists, policymakers, and the public. Sheril is the author of The Science of Kissing, which explores one of humanity's fondest pastimes. She also co-authored Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future with Chris Mooney, chosen by Library Journal as one of the Best Sci-Tech Books of 2009 and named by President Obama's science advisor John Holdren as his top recommended read. Sheril contributes to popular publications including Newsweek, The Washington Post, Discover Magazine, and The Nation, frequently covering topics that bridge science and society from climate change to genetically modified foods. Her writing is featured in the anthology The Best American Science Writing 2010. In 2006 Sheril served as a legislative Knauss science fellow on Capitol Hill with Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) where she was involved in energy, climate, and ocean policy. She also has experience working on pop radio and her work has been published in Science, Fisheries Bulletin, Oecologia, and Issues in Science and Technology. In 2007, she helped to found Science Debate; an initiative encouraging candidates to debate science research and innovation issues on the campaign trail. Previously, Sheril was a research associate at Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment and has served as a Fellow with the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation at the American Museum of Natural History and as a Howard Hughes Research Fellow. She has contributed reports to The Nature Conservancy and provided assistance on international protected area projects. Sheril serves as a science advisor to NPR's Science Friday and its nonprofit partner, Science Friday Initiative. She also serves on the program committee for the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She speaks regularly around the country to audiences at universities, federal agencies, and museums and has been a guest on such programs as The Today Show and The Daily Rundown on MSNBC. Sheril is a graduate of Tufts University and holds two masters of science degrees in marine biology and marine policy from the University of Maine. She co-hosts The Intersection on Discover blogs with Chris Mooney and has contributed to DeSmogBlog, Talking Science, Wired Science and Seed. She was born in Suffern, New York and is also a musician. Sheril lives in Austin, Texas with her husband David Lowry.Interested in booking Sheril Kirshenbaum to speak at your next event? Contact Hachette Speakers Bureau 866.376.6591 info@hachettespeakersbureau.comFor more information, visit her website or email Sheril at srkirshenbaum@yahoo.com.


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