Trump has put a crackpot who compared climate scientists to Nazis and terrorists in charge of a panel addressing climate change.
Trump is preparing a panel to attack climate science headed by William Happer, who has compared climate scientists to Nazis, mass murderers, and members of the terrorist group ISIS.
The Washington Post reports that Happer, who is already a senior director in Trump's National Security Council, is preparing the panel to attack research that has determined climate change is a national security threat.
"The initiative represents the Trump administration’s most recent attempt to question the findings of federal scientists," the Post notes.
For years, military leaders have been saying that climate change is a threat to American security.
Happer is not a climate scientist but has previously complained about the "demonization of CO2" by those attempting to limit emissions.
According to Happer, accurate depictions of the negative effect of carbon dioxide on the environment "really differs little from the Nazi persecution of the Jews, the Soviet extermination of class enemies or ISIL slaughter of infidels," Happer said.
Happer also falsely claimed there is a "war on CO2" going on.
In an unhinged 2014 appearance on CNBC, Happer yelled at New York Times reporter Aaron Ross Sorkin to "shut up" when he confronted him with his previous rants about climate science. Then he doubled down on his comparison.
"The comment I made was that the demonization of carbon dioxide is just like the demonization of the poor Jews under Hitler. Carbon dioxide is actually a benefit to the world and so were the Jews," he explained.
Happer is a professor emeritus at Princeton and in 2015 was caught agreeing to write a briefing paper financed by the fossil fuel industry to hype the "benefits of fossil fuels to developing economies."
The panel he is working on for Trump is described in an internal discussion paper as a committee "to advise the President on scientific understanding of today's climate, how the climate might change in the future under natural and human influences, and how a changing climate could affect the security of the United States."
The crackpot beliefs and rhetoric espoused by Happer fit right into Trump's approach to the environment and science. Trump has said that climate change is a "hoax" that was invented by the Chinese government. On several occasions, Trump has stupidly pointed to extreme cold weather as evidence that climate change does not exist.
Republicans overall have embraced wholesale denialism of the global climate change problem, preferring to mock serious solutions to the problem while catastrophes across the world increase thanks to higher temperatures.
Putting Happer in such an important position of influence with science he has actively worked to undermine is a perfect distillation of the Republican approach.
Climate change is real, it is happening, scientists know it, people are dying, and Trump and the Republicans do not care.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.