Year 3, Month 2, Day 20: That’s Not Epistemology, That’s Fouling The Wellspring Of Knowledge

The Christian Science Monitor notes the rare rays of sunlight that recently penetrated into the inner recesses of the climate-denial machinery:

Leaked documents from the free-market conservative organization The Heartland Institute reveal a plan to create school educational materials that contradict the established science on climate change.

The documents, leaked by an anonymous donor and released on DeSmogBlog, include the organization’s 2012 fundraising plan. It lists Heartland Institute donors, from the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation (established by Koch Industries billionaire Charles G. Koch), to Philip Morris parent company Altria, to software giant Microsoft and pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly.

The climate change education project is funded so far by an anonymous donor who has given $13 million to the Institute over the past five years. Proposed by policy analyst David Wojick, who holds a doctorate in epistemology and has worked for coal and electricity generation companies, the project would create education “modules” written to meet curriculum guidelines for every grade level.

A doctorate in epistemology, huh? That’s like a guy with a doctorate in epidemiology who spends his off-hours shitting in the water supply. Glad this got a bit of sunlight. I’ve been writing to the CSM for years and they haven’t published me yet. Here goes nuttin’! Sent Feb 15:

Between evangelical rejections of Darwinian evolution and petroleum-funded rejections of climatology, it’s amazing that any biology, physics or chemistry gets taught at all anymore. The exposure of the Heartland Institute’s massive investment in fostering climate-change denial in our schools pulls the covers off the continuing conservative effort to undermine our country’s system of science education. David Wojick, Heartland’s paid mouthpiece, has a degree in epistemology, the branch of philosophy which addresses the nature of knowledge. He may not know any climate science, but he’s a virtuoso at clouding the distinction between true and false. Coupled with a complaisant media establishment that has abdicated its responsibility to the Jeffersonian ideal of a “well-educated citizenry,” climate-change denialists have relegated an overwhelming scientific consensus to irrelevancy in the minds of much of the American public. This would be immaterial if the issue did not concern a civilizational threat of unprecedented magnitude and urgency.

Warren Senders

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