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Why Rick Perry Would Put the World on a Fast Track to Total Meltdown

From calling the BP disaster an "act of god" to responding to his state's drought with prayer, Perry's anti-environmental resume is extensive.

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While of course, it will rain at some point that doesn't get Texas out of hot water. The longterm prognosis for Texas is hotter and drier, thanks to guess what? Yeah, climate change. Perry has dismissed climate change as just another excuse for scientists to rake in the bucks, because you know what they say about climatologists just being in it for the money. If Perry admitted that global warming was a problem, then he’d have to admit that the oil and gas industry has a big part to play in that. Texas leads the nation in greenhouse gas emissions.

If you’re a Tea Party right-winger, you’re apparently suppose to deny science at all cost. As Perry said, “I don’t think, from my perspective, that I want America to be engaged in spending that much money still on a scientific theory that has not been proven, and from my perspective, is being put more and more into question.”

Hasn’t been proven? More and more in question? That is just flat out false — unless Perry knows something that just about all of the world’s leading scientists and scientific organizations don't. A study published in 2010 in  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found the consensus overwhelming:

We use an extensive dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data to show that 97–98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets of ACC [anthropogenic climate change] outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and the relative climate expertise and scientific prominence of the researchers unconvinced of ACC are substantially below that of the convinced researchers.

So, over 97 percent are in agreement and they are also the most expert and prominent in the field. The organizations that stand behind the science are the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, U.S. National Academy of Sciences, American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Chemical Society, the American Geophysical Union, American Meteorological Society, American Physical Society, Geological Society of America, and the list goes on.

Perry is either not smart enough to understand the science or he is willing to blow off the largest environmental and human health catastrophe for political posturing. 

His stance on global warming though is fitting with his overall environmental record. He called BP’s disaster in the Gulf an “ act of God," and has shunned any attempt to try and prevent another catastrophe. ABC News reported that Perry “lamented the lack of drilling in the Gulf Of Mexico, saying that the government should not put drilling there on hold ‘because of one event -- the Deepwater Horizon event.’” 

I guess even if that “one event” is the country’s largest environmental disaster, it doesn’t qualify for a little more oversight of industry. Perry, it turns out, would actually like zero oversight of, well, everything. Shortly after announcing his bid for the presidency, he said, “We’re calling today on the president of the United States to put a moratorium on regulations across this country.”

As Brad Johnson at Think Progress noted, this is essentially akin to total anarchy. He writes

Under such a moratorium, the Food and Drug Administration would stop approving new drugs and preventing human experimentation; the USDA would stop checking for food safety; the EPA would stop monitoring for poisons in drinking water; the Library of Congress would stop loaning materials to blind people; the NTSB would stop investigating airplane accidents; HHS would end Medicare payments; no more patents, copyrights, or trademarks would be issued; DHS would stop protecting chemical facilities from terrorist attacks; the Treasury would stop printing currency; financial sanctions on hostile nations like North Korea and Iran would end; and the Federal Reserve System would shut down. Perry’s “moratorium on regulations” would mean a literal end to the rules of law in the United States.