Ignorance loves company. The truly stupid resent those who are not and won’t be satisfied until they’ve burned all the books, torn down the libraries, closed the universities, and made it impossible for anyone else not to share their own proud ignorance.
It’s hard to overstate the loss of knowledge that this bill would bring about. We wouldn’t know the unemployment rate or how many people are working. We wouldn’t know how many people are in the workforce, or enrolled in school, or retired. We wouldn’t know how much people are earning, or how many are in poverty. We wouldn’t know how many people are robbed or assaulted each year.
Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), who is a global warming denier, by the way, is the head of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. He has recently decided that the National Science Foundation — a globally respected agency of scientific research and investigation — should no longer use peer review to fund grants. Instead it should essentially get political permission for which research to fund.
This is not a joke. Smith wants politics to trump science at the National Science Foundation.
North Carolina? You remember: the state against science regarding sea level rise? The state with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources head who doubts climate change science and believes oil is a renewable resource? The state that tried to appoint a head of early childhood education who believed the Fukushima earthquake might have been caused by ultrasonic waves from North Korea? That North Carolina?
Folks, that’s nothing. We have a new record.
Example No. 4 (somewhat less recent).
In March of 415 C.E., on a sunny day in the holy season of Lent, Cyril of Alexandria, the most powerful Christian theologian in the world, murdered Hypatia, the most famous Greco-Roman philosopher of the time. Hypatia was slaughtered like an animal in the church of Caesarion, formerly a sanctuary of emperor worship. Cyril may not have been among the gang that pulled Hypatia from her chariot, tearing off her clothes and slashing her with shards of broken tiles, but her murder was surely done under his authority and with his approval.