On Monday, Fox News host Shepard Smith accused the GOP of making climate change a “political issue,” declaring “it’s science.”
Mediaite picked up those comments from Smith, who reported on the recently released government climate change report. The report predicted that rising temperatures could cost the U.S. economy hundreds of billions of dollars and cause premature deaths, including deaths from starvation, mosquito-borne disease, heat exhaustion, flooding, and other natural disasters by the year 2090. The report urges action to reduce fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions.
“Heat waves are getting stronger, floods are growing larger, wildfires are obliterating more of America’s landscape. It’s because of climate change that’s largely man-made. Our burning of fossil fuels is damaging planet Earth, and the time to stop it is running out,” Smith said.
“By the end of the century, climate change could shrink the U.S. economy by hundreds of billions of dollars,” he continued. “That is the warning in a new report released on Friday, ahead of schedule, by the Trump administration.”
Smith summarized several of the report’s findings and attacked Republicans.
“The climate science is accepted science,” Smith said. “Governments across the nation are spending billions preparing for what is to come. The U.S. military, too, billions of dollars. This is not a political issue. It’s science. But some have made it political — especially Republicans. And as a result, a lot of folks have missed this report. It was dropped, as I said, ahead of schedule, on Black Friday, when a lot of Americans are busy shopping, eating Thanksgiving leftovers, and spending time with the family. But it’s extremely important.”
Smith is implying, as many in the media openly assert, that the timing of the report’s release was designed to bury the story over the long weekend, for political reasons.
Attacking Republicans for politicizing the climate change issue is nonsensical. Climate change is a political issue because the Left demands political action to counter it. The Left proposes increased taxation, cap and trade schemes, banning fossil fuels outright, and heavily regulating American industry to combat climate change. The most extreme elements of the Left demand that capitalism itself be destroyed to “save the planet” — though with the rising popularity of socialism, this position is becoming more mainstream on the Left. Such radical economic transformation can only be accomplished by coercive government power, which is activated and put into effect by the political process. Smith doesn’t talk about those proposals.
Though Smith argues climate change is settled “science,” that does not mean the predictions made in the report are fact. In fact, experts dispute the report’s “blatantly absurd conclusions.”
“This report is a scientific embarrassment,” Heartland Institute science director Jay Lehr said. “Not only does it rely on computer models to predict the climate through the end of the century, it relies on computer models from five years ago that have been laughably wrong, failing to get even close to reality since 2013.”
“The assessment is full of dubious and outright junk science that does not meet the minimal standards required by the Information Quality Act,” said Myron Ebell, director of the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Center for Energy and Environment. “The alarmists’ claims about the rate and impacts of global warming are based on discredited computer models rather than data. Contrary to the assessment’s conclusions, the rate of warming continues to be modest and the impacts continue to be mild.”
Is Shepard Smith interested in reporting on the criticisms of the government’s report? Or is his definition of “fair and balanced” attacking Republicans for refusing to implement new government policies in response to climate alarmism?
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Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.
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