This post is by Jesse Galef, who works for the American Humanist Association
Ladies and gentlemen, for your daily dose of stupid, I give you Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) quotes explaining why he doesn’t want to do anything about greenhouse gasses (via Thinkprogress):
“I would also point out that CO2, carbon dioxide, is not a pollutant in any normal definition of the term. It’s not hazardous to health, it’s naturally occurring. I am creating it as I talk to you. It’s in your Coca-Cola, you’re Dr. Pepper, your Perrier water. It is necessary for human life. It is odorless, colorless, tasteless, does not cause cancer, does not cause asthma.”
“And something that the Democrat sponsors do not point out, a lot of the CO2 that is created in the United States is naturally created. You can’t regulate God. Not even the Democratic majority in the US Congress can regulate God.”
Let’s say that a neighbor were spraying lots of water on his lawn, day and night. It’s ruining your garden, flooding your basement, and causing mold and mosquitoes to spawn in the standing water.
Would you be comforted to hear him say, “Did you know that H2O is naturally occurring? It’s in our Coca-Cola, is necessary for human life, is odorless, colorless, tasteless, does not cause cancer, and does not cause asthma! Besides, rain is water, and we can’t regulate the rain!”
No, you would want him to turn off the damn sprinklers.
We know the harmful effects of greenhouse gasses. No longer suppressed by the Bush administration, the E.P.A. recently declared that there was “compelling and overwhelming” evidence that greenhouse gasses “endanger public health and welfare.”
Barton also had this familiar gem:
“If you think greenhouse gases are bad, life couldn’t exist without greenhouse gases. … So, there is a, there is a climate theory — and it’s a theory, it’s not a fact, it’s never been proven — that increasing concentrations of CO2 in the upper atmosphere somehow interact to trap more heat than the atmosphere would otherwise.”
This man is the highest-ranking Republican on the Energy and Commerce Committee. Wonderful.