Thursday, October 4, 2012

#357: John Shimkus

Those expecting Charlie Sheen to pop up here: forget it. We have standards, and Sheen has not qualified himself (pseudo-scientist Rupert Sheldrake, of morphic field fame, is British, as is the thoroughly despicable Jeremy Sherr).

Trust the Americans to come up with a monster of a religious loon instead. John Shimkus is a Republican congressman (Illinois' 19th congressional district) and Chairman of the Committee on Environment and the Economy. His extreme, anti-science, denialist, religious fundamentalist, and fully unsupported views on climate change have actually drawn some attention for their inanity, which is a feat for someone representing the same party as James Inhofe.

Shimkus has stated that Climate Change is nothing to worry about. His evidence? That God promised Noah that after the great flood, Earth would be fine (careful readers of the Bible may notice that even according to Bible God did not exactly say this). Therefore we need no regulation: “The earth will end only when God declares its time to be over. Man will not destroy this earth. This earth will not be destroyed by a flood". In addition to its inanely delusional qualities, this doesn’t really address the actual worries related to climate change. Shimkus is also concerned that, since Carbon Dioxide is plant food, attempts to cut down on it will actually be harmful to the world. Yes, Shimkus is that blissfully ignorant about science and reality.

For a brief comment on the Republican war on reality (with focus on Shimkus), you can go here.

Shimkus was originally set for leadership of the Committee on Energy and Commerce. That post instead went to Michigan Rep. Fred Upton, who has falsely (probably willful lying) claimed that there is no scientific consensus regarding climate change and is so misinformed regarding Climategate that he advocated for congressional hearings. Upton beat denialist, ├╝berloon, and BP-apologist Joe “Wind is God’s way of balancing heat” Barton to the Committee post, by the way.

Diagnosis: Shimkus is “the loon's loon's loon's loon – four deep into loonery” [Ed Brayton] and a stunning example of Dunning-Kruger at work. With people like Shimkus running the show, we are really, truly screwed. Extremely dangerous.

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