Year 4, Month 8, Day 9: Just One Small Burp.

The Wall Street Journal notes Gina McCarthy’s confirmation, and includes some words from Yertle the Turtle:

Ms. McCarthy is generally well-respected by both environmental groups and industry leaders. Several senators, however, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) faulted Ms. McCarthy for her role in crafting greenhouse-gas standards. Ms. McCarthy has led the EPA’s clean-air office since 2009.

“I don’t blame Ms. McCarthy personally for all of the administration’s policies,” Mr. McConnell said Thursday. “But I believe the EPA needs an administrator who is ready to step up and challenge the idea that the livelihoods of particular groups of Americans can simply be sacrificed in pursuit of some Ivory Tower fantasy.”

Hey, Mitch? Fuck you. July 20:

When Mitch McConnell describes the science of climate change as an “ivory-tower fantasy,” he’s tapping into a long tradition of Republican anti-intellectualism, an epistemological faux populism that had its first contemporary triumph during the administration of President Truman. Those with long memories may recall the purge of “old China hands” from the State Department on suspicions of communist sympathies — a decimation of expertise that laid the groundwork for the USA’s most spectacular foreign policy debacle, our ignorance-propelled misadventure in Vietnam.

History offers plenty of examples of the GOP’s hostility to expertise, but the one which will have the profoundest consequences is undoubtedly the stubborn refusal of Republican lawmakers to recognize the validity of scientific findings on the climate crisis. Long after Vietnam and Iraq have been forgotten, our descendants will still be grappling with the appalling consequences of our refusal to act on a genuinely clear and present danger.

Warren Senders

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