Thursday, February 01, 2007

Worst. President. Ever.

And in today's edition of Worst. President. Ever. we give warming.

On Wednesday we get confirmation of something we've suspected for a long time, that BushCorp™ manipulates scientific data (by means of political oversight of science organizations) in order to further its nefarious pro-corporate agenda.

More than 120 scientists across seven federal agencies say they have been pressured to remove references to "climate change" and "global warming" from a range of documents, including press releases and communications with Congress. Roughly the same number say appointees altered the meaning of scientific findings on climate contained in communications related to their research.

These findings, part of a new report compiled by two watchdog groups, shed new light on complaints by a scattering of scientists over the past year who have publicly complained that Bush administration appointees have tried to mute or muzzle what researchers have to say about global warming.

And today we get a harrowing view of the potential effects of the global warming BushCorp™ has spent so much effort denying:

By 2100, retired snowbirds will be joined by "sun birds" – who flee north to escape oppressively hot, humid summers not just in Miami, but Milwaukee as well. In the US West, deep mountain snows – currently a key natural reservoir for fresh water – will virtually vanish. And while the growing season will expand by about a month, urban gardeners will spend more time indoors as higher temperatures help boost smog at ground level.

Welcome to a world where the climate is, on average, 3 degrees Celsius (5.4 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than today.

That projection – more specific than any previous one – is just one element expected to emerge this week as some 500 scientists from around the world gather to put the finishing touches on a major report on the Earth's climate and what the future may hold for it as humans continue to pump heat-trapping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

It's common wisdom that Bush's Iraqi nightmare will be his lingering historical legacy.

But it's possible that his worse crime won't be the deaths of 100s of thousands of humans (yes, I include Iraqi deaths as worth consideration), but will instead be the willful ignorance and greed that may ultimately lead to the deaths of millions.

And yes, I know, Incurious George has plenty of company in ignorance and denial, but given the magnitude of the potential devastation I can not believe he will be spared.

And the thought occurs to me that perhaps the title of Worst. President. Ever. is insufficient to express W's palce in history.

Compare him, for example, to another famed tyrant.

But while Nero fiddled while Rome burned, Shrub* twiddles his fingers while the world burns.

*RIP Molly Ivins, we sorely miss you.

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