How dare anyone doubt climate change!
"And yet it moves," Galileo Galilei whispered when brought before the Inquisition of his day and being forced to recant his claims that the earth moves around the sun.
But who dares challenge today's? For all the apparatus of church and state and its multitudinous laws and ordinances, clauses and sub-clauses, have been summoned to defend today's established Church of Climate Change against all dissenters.
But even before the state there was Michael Mann, now revealed as a fraud and bully, who concocted his now infamous Hockey Stick graph to "prove" that the planet's climate was changing, and in a way that could be conveniently traced on his computer. It was much too neat to be credible, but he proceeded to bring suit against anybody who dared doubt him. From the Competitive Enterprise Institute to National Review magazine, heretics all. The First Amendment be damned, such views had to be suppressed as thoroughly as those of the Cathars and Waldensians who were burned at the stake in the Middle Ages.
Nowadays it is a U.S. senator from Rhode Island, Sheldon Whitehouse, who's assumed the mantle of Grand Inquisitor, and who's recruited the Department of Justice to provide the legal muscle behind his crusade. Its instrument of choice is not the rack but RICO, the Racketeer and Corrupt Organization Act, which is to be used to intimidate non-believers.
A couple of congressmen from California, Ted Lieu and Mark DeSaulnier, promptly signed up behind Senator Whitehouse -- and our exquisitely named attorney general, the Hon. Loretta Lynch, has already sicced the FBI's gumshoes on the suspects, which now include Exxon Mobil since it has financed unbiased research on the subject.
A new McCarthyism is fast taking wing as spurious science is backed by spurious law. But not if legal analysts like David Rivkin and Andrew Grossman have their independent-minded way. They've just established a Free Speech in Science Project to further the principles of open debate and free speech in what is supposed to be a free country. Let the debate over climate change continue unabated. As if it were not revealed doctrine but subject to doubt, that great ally in what should be a struggle for truth unqualified and undisguised, not just another fraud.
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Paul Greenberg is the Pulitzer-winning editorial page editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.