Saturday, February 17, 2018

#1966: Pat McElraft

Pat McElraft is the Republican representative for the 13th district in the North Carolina House of Representatives, having served since 2006, and currently one of the Deputy Majority Whips. McElraft is a climate change denialist, and largely responsible for the 2012 law banning the state from basing coastal policies on the latest scientific predictions of how much the sea level will rise due to climate change, a move that drew international attention and scorn.

McElraft herself called the law a “breather”, allowing the state to “step back” and continue studying sea-level rise for the next several years without doing anything, so that they can achieve more accurate prediction models. (We hope we don’t need to point out the problem with that kind of reasoning.) In her defense, and in a characteristically Orwellian fashion, McElraft, although admitting that “the environmental side say we’re ignoring science,” pointed out that “the bill actually asks for more science.” As McElraft saw things: “We’re not ignoring science, we’re asking for the best science possible, the best extrapolation possible, looking at the historical data also. We just need to make sure that we’re getting the proper answers.” Or, put differently, we’ll continue to ask for new and “improved” scientific results until we find someone who tells us what we want to hear.

In 1974, the alarmists were talking about the ice age coming in,” said McElraft: “What has happened, has the ice age come in?” Scientists did not say in 1974 that the ice age was coming, but the myth that they did is admittedly popular on pseudoscience and conspiracy theory websites.

In elections, McElraft has occasionally been challenged by sensible people who realize how deranged and delusional she is, but McElraft has won with safe margins every time. This is because the majority of people of Carteret and Jones Counties are stupid and/or have short-term stakes in seaside properties, the value of which would decline if sea-levels rose. “You can believe whatever you want about global warming,” said McElraft, “but when you go to make planning policies here for our residents and protecting their property values and insurance rates, it’s a very serious thing to us on the coast.” Climate change should therefore not be the basis for such policies.

Diagnosis: Utter madness. Complete, undiluted insanity.

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