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Where to start with this?  Brandon Smith is a Kentucky state senator.  He also own a coal mine.  He is also a climate change denier, and his proof of why climate change is a hoax is quite obvious:

Mars and Earth Have the Same Temperature

And a succinct quote, just for some flavor:

I will simply point out that I think in academia we all agree that the temperature on Mars is exactly as it is here. Nobody will dispute that.

The Patheos link has some good science discussion, it seems (I really only read the beginning, I don't need a science lesson, but the author does speculate that Mr. Smith is conflating the absolute high temperatures on Mars with an average global temperature).

He owns a coal mine.  Convenient he's on Interim Joint Committee on Natural Resources and Environment.  Shouldn't owning a coal mine and being on an environmental committee be considered at least the appearance of a conflict of interest?

Phil Plait in Bad Astronomy touches on this is a different context, relating it to the recent tongue lashing the BBC recently got for giving climate denier cranks equal footing with real scientists.

Stop Giving Airtime To Crackpots

EDIT - wanted to embed this video in the Patheos article...which was really from Raw Story:

http://videos.rawstory.com/...

Poll

How outrageous is this idiot?

57%22 votes
10%4 votes
15%6 votes
2%1 votes
0%0 votes
13%5 votes

| 38 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Yup. (9+ / 0-)

    And I'm Chief of Surgery at John Hopkins University.

    Legal means "good".
    [41984 | Feb 4, 2005]

    by xxdr zombiexx on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 01:45:51 PM PDT

    •  I'd move to a different university if I were you. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tampaedski, wader

      After all, Hopkins had Ben Carson on staff as a neurosurgeon.  

      A word to the wise is sufficient. Republicans need at least a paragraph.

      by d3clark on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 02:09:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  He's a well-regarded neurosurgeon (4+ / 0-)

        He doesn't instantly become "horrible at everything he's ever done or will do" simply by virtue of having horrible political leanings.

        ad astra per alia porci

        by harrije on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 02:16:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  He's displayed incredible selfishness (0+ / 0-)

          and ignorance on a number of subjects, so I really don't care about his possible neuro-surgical feats once demonstrated.  I wouldn't taint Johns Hopkins solely because of him, of course.

          And frankly, I've known of many, many neuros who were gung-ho, hyper-aggressive surgeons and relatively insufferable, disaffected, A+ personalities - some of whom negatively impacted their patients by pressuring them to accept over-the-top procedures in relation to actual symptoms and life situations.  Yet, all the while, their peers would claim these surgeons were the best, etc.  Pfft.

          "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

          by wader on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 05:33:34 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  You read too much into my post. I never said (0+ / 0-)

          what you implied "horrible at everything he's ever done or will do" please don't put words into my keyboard.  

          Furthermore, the term "well-regarded" depends on the group evaluating him.  Parents of Hopkins patients whose children have done well post-op would regard him highly - as most patients would regard doctors who help them or their children.  However, "highly-regarded" in a professional sense, compared to his neurosurgical peers, evaluated by peers?  The results might be different there.  I'm sure that he'd still be well-regarded, but he has quite a bit of competition.

          Kim Manwaring has taught courses for, and lectured to other pediatric neurosurgeons all over the world.  The late Jack Laurent, another was great who had an international reputation.  John Grant, who presents and teaches internationally (in several languages[imagine teaching a highly technical subject in other languages]) as well as maintaining an active practice in the US.  The late Fred Epstein who pioneered a number of pediatric neurosurgical operative techniques.  Alexa Canady, developed a pump to help control hydrocephalus, held the Chair of Neurosurgery and filled an endowed professorship.  Bruce Kaufman and many others.  So let's keep Dr. Carson in perspective and not overreact to something that was never said.

          A word to the wise is sufficient. Republicans need at least a paragraph.

          by d3clark on Sat Jul 12, 2014 at 06:32:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I'm Ben's boss - I'll tell him to stick a sock in (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wader, d3clark

        it

        Legal means "good".
        [41984 | Feb 4, 2005]

        by xxdr zombiexx on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 03:18:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I thought that Dr. Carson had retired from (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          xxdr zombiexx

          neurosurgery.  That means you must be Roger Ailes!  I didn't realize that you posted on DK.

          Nah, leave Ben unsocked.  I really enjoy listening to him sometimes.  I like it when he talks about the bible.  How Mary got to ride that saber-toothed tiger when she was pregnant with Jesus.  How the pterodactyl perched on the roof of the leaky manger and spread its wings, protecting all from the horrible blizzards in the area.  I never heard much about Jesus' childhood.  Didn't know that he was friends with Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm.  Next week, he's going to lead us in a group chant, "EVIL-lution, EVIL-lution, EVIL-lution!"

          A word to the wise is sufficient. Republicans need at least a paragraph.

          by d3clark on Sat Jul 12, 2014 at 07:20:43 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I like this quote (8+ / 0-)
    "But as hot as Mercury can get, Venus gets way, way hotter.  The average temperature on Venus is 872 F (467 C)!  And it doesn’t fluctuate hardly at all.  Light side, dark side, the whole planet is hotter than Mercury ever gets!  That’s enough to melt lead.  It’s why we send probes to Mars, but not Venus.  But how can this be when Venus is almost twice as far away from the sun as Mercury?  Simple: it’s because of all the carbon in Venus’ very thick atmosphere.  It traps heat in much like Earth’s atmosphere, but only much, much more, turning the planet into a veritable hell."
    with one modifier, it's not just the carbon, but also the sulfur, and other elements that make up green house gasses.

    The global warming awareness comes from trying to figure out why venus is so much hotter than mercury, which was a mystery when it was first noticed. It has nothing to do with wanting to have the government regulate everything.

    If god doesn't have a sense of humor I'm f*cked

    by apoliticism on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 01:48:28 PM PDT

  •  Missing poll options: (_) Gohmert, (•) West, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tampaedski, JeffW, wader

    and (_) Bachmann.

    Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
    I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
    —Spike Milligan

    by polecat on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 01:49:27 PM PDT

  •  To Be Fair, He Misspoke, the Meme is That All the (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tampaedski, Lujane, Catte Nappe, dconrad, wader

    planets have been similarly heating up for some years, only this dufus accidentally said they have the same temperature.

    There must have been a kernel of truth within it, because I learned of the trend from astronomy guests on public radio on science programming not related to earth climate.

    It's since been debunked, and we now know also that the sun has been cooling somewhat not heating up.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 01:57:34 PM PDT

  •  He has a B.A. in poly sci, owns a coal mine and (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tampaedski, Gordon20024, Lujane, wader

    is a Republican politician.  How do those things qualify him  to appoint himself a member of academia?  
    ". . . I think in academia we all agree . . ."  

    A word to the wise is sufficient. Republicans need at least a paragraph.

    by d3clark on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 02:20:09 PM PDT

  •  Say what? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dconrad, wader, tampaedski

    This land is your land and this land is my land, sure, but the world is run by those that never listen to music anyway. ~ Bob Dylan ~

    by NCTim on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 04:13:31 PM PDT

  •  When somebody starts out with this: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OooSillyMe, tampaedski
    "I will simply point out that I think in academia we all agree that the temperature on Mars is exactly as it is here. Nobody will dispute that."
    it's pretty obvious to me they not only know absolutely nothing about what they're talking about, but also that they know it and want to block any and all opposition before it can even get started.  
    "Nobody will dispute that."
    Which means, "So shut the f--- up."  Hey, isn't that Chris Christie type debating?

    "The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it." -- Neil DeGrasse Tyson/// "Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -- Aldous Huxley

    by ThePhlebob on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 07:46:32 PM PDT

  •  I find this speculation: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tampaedski
    but the author does speculate that Mr. Smith is conflating the absolute high temperatures on Mars with an average global temperature).
    to be extremely generous.  Given Mr. Smith's direct quotation, which includes a virtual, "And don't you dare contradict me!" clause, I don't think he bothered to do any research whatsoever on Mars' temperatures, low, average, high or absolute high.  He just pulled the concept out of his rear end and rammed it into the discussion.  

    Period.

    "The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it." -- Neil DeGrasse Tyson/// "Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -- Aldous Huxley

    by ThePhlebob on Fri Jul 11, 2014 at 07:52:10 PM PDT

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