This Kentucky Republican Hilariously Fails At Science In Argument Against Coal Emissions Regulations (VIDEO)

Smokestack pollution.

Photo cc 2006 by Señor Codo via Flickr. http://www.flickr.com/photos/senor_codo/sets/72157638160061484/

To paraphrase Star Wars, the stupid is strong in this one. As Republicans across the country throw temper tantrums in defense of the coal industry, a Kentucky state GOP senator has just demonstrated how utterly science illiterate his party is.

During a meeting of the Interim Joint Committee on Natural Resources and Environment last week, Republicans attacked President Obama and the Environmental Protection Agency over new carbon emissions regulations designed to cut pollution and fight climate change. Under the new standards, the nation’s power plants must cut carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030, 16 years from now.

But state Senator Brandon Smith has a problem with this. You see, Smith is not only a Republican sworn to oppose the black man in the White House no matter the cost, it turns out he actually owns a coal plant. Saving the environment apparently doesn’t matter much to Smith. His bottom line is far more important than what science says is happening to our planet. At the committee meeting, Smith defended coal and the right to pollute by spouting an asinine claim that would get him laughed out of every science classroom in America.

According to Smith, it’s perfectly fine to continue pumping poisonous black smoke out of the smokestacks of coal plants into Earth’s atmosphere because Mars is the same temperature and doesn’t have coal mines and factories.

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“I won’t get into the debate about climate change. But I’ll simply point out that I think in academia we all agree that the temperature on Mars is exactly as it is here. Nobody will dispute that. Yet there are no coal mines on Mars. There’s no factories on Mars that I’m aware of.”

Here’s the video via Raw Story:

Well, he’s right about one thing. There are definitely no coal mines or factories on Mars. However, he’s so wrong about the temperatures on Earth and Mars that just using such an argument should disqualify him from being an elected official.

Earth’s average temperature is 57 degrees Farhenheit, whereas Mars is a popsicle at -81 degrees Farhenheit. So Mars, which doesn’t have coal plants spewing toxic greenhouse gases, is cold. Of course, the thin atmosphere of the lifeless Mars is already 96 percent carbon dioxide, one of the poison gases that carbon emissions standards seek to reduce. On Earth, which does have coal plants, the temperature is much warmer and it’s getting hotter. So hot, in fact, the ice caps are literally beginning to melt and break into pieces. This ice melt is precisely why scientists are predicting major ocean level rise that will flood the coastlines. Considering that bleak news, -81 degrees sounds great, especially for the ice caps.

The fact is, Republicans have no idea what they are talking about when they try to talk about science. It’s so embarrassing, that America would be best served by requiring any candidate who wants to run for public office to actually understand science in order to get on the ballot. But, what else can we expect from people who routinely deny even the most basic of scientific facts? If President Obama held a press conference to endorse gravity, Republicans would deny it, call gravity a hoax, and hop off cliffs just to spite him. Of course then we would no longer have to deal with their stupidity and we can finally move forward with the effort to save our world as science tells us we must.