January 26, 2017

Blending Science With Propaganda

The Left and only the Left can control scientific thought. Or so they say.

On election night, leftist elites were shocked to learn that a large swath of the country doesn’t think like they do. After all, these self-appointed intellectual rulers deem themselves the sole purveyors of sound political reasoning. Turns out political thought isn’t the only thing the Left wants to dictate. No, these folks also think they hold the trademark on Science™.

Consider, for example, President Donald Trump’s putting the kibosh on the social media accounts of certain federal agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The restrictions came just as Trump moved to approve the Keystone pipeline — a project the climate change propagandists at the EPA have, of course, viewed none too kindly. It’s not without precedent for incoming administrations to ensure the messaging from federal agencies is consistent with White House messaging. Indeed, as John Sexton notes, “The Trump administration does not want progressives in these agencies joining ‘the resistance’ using government social media accounts.”

That’s just what some government employees have done. And they have allies in the press. For example, Reuters reported it this way: “Employees from more than a dozen U.S. government agencies have established a network of unofficial ‘rogue’ Twitter feeds in defiance of what they see as attempts by President Donald Trump to muzzle federal climate change research and other science.” The @RogueNASA account styles itself the arbiter of “science and climate news and facts. REAL NEWS, REAL FACTS.”

Amidst the hoopla of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” don’t miss the overtones of resistance fighters bravely and nobly opposing the evil empire.

What’s also entertaining here is the apoplectic reaction. Liz Purchia, EPA public affairs head under Barack Obama, wailed, “It’s a dark time now. People are nervous and they are scared about what they can and can’t do.” Another government source said (with a straight face), “The idea of bad stuff being tweeted from EPA was not likely.” Of course, this is because the EPA assumes its opinions of climate change are settled Science™ and not simply theory. After all, if the Left says it’s true, it must be true.

The EPA isn’t alone. Soon after the gag order, the National Park Service took up the climate change mantle, with Badlands National Park posting a series of tweets bemoaning carbon dioxide. Those tweets were subsequently deleted. But in a telling sign that offended leftists within the agency are not confined to one park, staff at several parks are pursuing what the Chicago Tribune calls a “campaign against Trump,” tweeting out messages warning about global warming and greenhouse gas emissions. After all, the Left and only the Left can control scientific thought.

Of course it doesn’t stop with the government. Some in the lofty, ivory towers of academia want to use these unproven scientific theories as the plumb line to determine “fake news.” Next, we’ll use a slinky to draw a straight line.

Social psychologists at Cambridge, Yale and George Mason universities attempted to essentially inoculate individuals against “fake news” by feeding them climate change “facts” as well as “a small dose of misinformation.” Among the conclusions: “False information presented on its own was … shown to have a potent effect at spreading doubt about the veracity of the overwhelming scientific consensus on human-caused climate change.”

That “overwhelming consensus” must be referring to the overwhelmingly overused myth that 97% of scientists believe climate change is man-made and an impending global disaster.

Oh, but government agencies and universities don’t have anything on the press. The Washington Post outdid itself last week with a headline that will almost make you feel embarrassed for the paper — almost. The Post claimed “David Gelernter, fiercely anti-intellectual computer scientist, is being eyed for Trump’s science advisor.” Alas! Who is this anti-intellectual Philistine? Well, as the article itself notes, he’s “a pioneer in the field of parallel computation, a type of computing in which many calculations are carried out simultaneously.” Gelernter also developed a programming language that “made it possible to link together several small computers into a supercomputer, significantly increasing the amount and complexity of data that computers can process.” In fact, he’s a genius.

But, as the Washington Examiner’s T. Becket Adams notes, Gelernter is also “a fierce critic of academia” who believes too many universities “promote and support the idea that opposing thoughts should be silenced and expelled.” Hence to the liberal Post, he’s clearly “anti-intellectual.” Because, as we’ve learned, the Left thinks it owns the trademark on Science™, of which academia is a part.

This makes it all so devilishly amusing when anyone on the Left bemoans the spread of “fake news.” Because if there’s one thing leftists are universally experts on, it’s not science, but fakery.

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