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Have Karl Rove, climate deniers and ultraconservative pundits gone bonkers?

Rush Limbaugh
Rush Limbaugh

Karl Rove, neoconservative right-wing politicians and carnival-barking pundits have all gotten so extreme it has caused critics to question their sanity.

In a report published this week in The Hill entitled “Has the right-wing lost its marbles?” Peter Fenn put it this way:

Ann Coulter mocking the effort to help hundreds of schoolgirls kidnapped in Nigeria. Rush Limbaugh spending days bloviating that climate change is a left-wing political conspiracy and has nothing to do with science. Karl Rove — paging Dr. Rove — who has diagnosed former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with brain damage.

The goal is to be outlandish and extreme enough to attract the attention, campaign support and votes of low-informed members of the GOP base.

But what responsible self-respecting Republican or pundit with an IQ above pond-scum would risk feigning ignorance and foolishness, while abandoning even a modicum of integrity?

The ones who want to keep their jobs, according to the opposition.

Louisiana Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal, who famously said the GOP should start making better choices and stop being the “party of stupid,” came out in defense of Duck Dynasty’s homophobic star Phil Robertson and recently claimed to be his biggest defender to a Liberty University crowd.

Then there’s tea party darling Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, who represents one of the most vulnerable states in the nation to the ravages of climate change and rising sea levels. Rubio claimed this week that man isn’t responsible for global warming and scoffed at the world’s top scientists who say it is a 97 percent certainty. He invoked a popular denier’s myth that changing weather is a natural cycle.

“I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it,” Rubio said in an LA Times report. "I do not believe that the laws that they propose we pass will do anything about it, except it will destroy our economy.”

The capacity for reasonably intelligent people like Rove, Limbaugh, Jindal and Rubio, along with other pundits and most Republicans in Congress to deny conclusions of the world’s top scientists on climate change is astonishing.

Particularly after the steady parade of recent reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the National Climate Assessment findings, US military warnings and many others that have concluded unequivocally that human inaction on climate change would be catastrophic.

The fact that GOP rails against bigger government, particularly since President Barack Obama was elected twice, with most of the conservative lawmakers signing a pledge to never raise taxes again for any reason, can be identified as part of the problem.

The unwavering deaf, dumb and blind focus of the current lot of ultraconservative lawmakers to their mantra will go down in history, critics say, as one of the most damaging things to future generations and the planet.

“This kind of absolutism pervades conservative opposition to mainstream science and economics,” Grist’s Ben Adler wrote in his report. “Admitting you believe in evolution could open the door to denying the existence of God. Admitting that tax cuts aren’t the solution to every economic situation means you might someday endorse a tax increase. Admitting that climate change is happening could lead you one day to raise taxes to pay for dealing with it.”

It doesn’t appear that any of those admissions by the right wing’s ignorance and propaganda juggernaut will emerge soon enough to help the current climate crisis or prevent their petty attempts to block the election of another Democrat to the White House — especially if that Democrat is potentially a female named Hillary Clinton.


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