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Climate Change Denial Sweeping Into Public Schools

Climate Change Denial Sweeping Into Public Schools

The various attacks on public and private unions orchestrated across the states has clear, direct ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC. But did you know that a host of anti-science bills mandating the teaching of climate change denial or “skepticism” as a credible “theoretical alternative” to climate change is also an ALEC bill?

So far Texas and Louisiana have introduced education standards that require educators to teach climate change denial as a valid scientific position. Both South Dakota and Utah passed resolutions denying climate change and Tennessee and Oklahoma also have introduced legislation to open classrooms up to climate change deniers.

In this case the ALEC model bill is called the “Environmental Literacy Improvement Act and is financed by the oil and gas industry. The Center for Media and Democracy traced the money behind the bill and discovered The Heartland Institute, run by the daughter of disgraced Watergate convict G. Gordon Liddy helped develop the bill. The Heartland Institute is heavily funded by ExxonMobile and Koch Industries.

It’s not just that corporations have extensive resources to pour into electoral politics via dark money, its that they simultaneously fund these astroturf groups that promote disinformation campaigns purely to promote their own economic gains. It’s a dirty, cynical way to conduct public policy and governance that is ultimately not compatible with a healthy, functioning democracy.

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Photo from natalielucier via flickr.

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187 comments

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12:17AM PST on Feb 23, 2013

thanks

1:46AM PDT on Jun 9, 2012

I thought their line was "yes, there's global warming and climate change but humans have nothing to do with it". This is even more daft

3:34AM PDT on Jun 3, 2012

Thats Ridiculous!!

6:05AM PDT on Jun 2, 2012

Religion and Corporations have a huge influence on our society. They should not be permitted to make any public statements outside their narrow range of interest, should not be permitted to make donations OF ANY KIND TO ANY ORGANIZATION and they should not be permitted to seek public office EVEN AFTER RETIRING FROM RELIGION OR BUSINESS. This is an enormous conflict of interest scenario. Finally, their embarassing lack of education and understanding of scientific phenomona is criminal. They should be in therapy if not in prison on death row for the danger they are exposing the rest of us to. It's really too bad there isn't a god because these people would be whisked away immediately.

7:09PM PDT on May 15, 2012

ALEC "ubber alles!?" The wish to not have to spend any money on corrective actions, is greed at any cost.
Roger M., I'm with you, and ashamed that my country can harbour such phenomenal stupidity.

11:06PM PDT on May 12, 2012

Dear Americans,

The rest of us are fed up to the back teeth with this crap that some of you are still coming out with on this. We regard these people as religious extremists who pay no attention to scientific data, favouring a worldview based on a load of old codswallop.

Please stop it so we at least have a hope in hell of saving this planet for our children.

Thanks very much.

10:58PM PDT on May 12, 2012

When they spout their ridiculousness to adults, it's irritating, but we can counter with facts, but when they lie to inquiring, absorbent minds, I GET REAL MAD!!! Education means to educate, not brainwash. And my state's one of them -- I apologize to America. We Dems work all the magic we can, but it's tough in Texas.

1:40PM PDT on Apr 29, 2012

No global warming? Creationism? etc. People's heads are kept in the sand in order to protect the interests of companies (I mean people) like Shell Oil, BP, etc etc. It rerminds me of Aldous Huxley's book 'Brave New World', but in this case the future of the poanet is at stake.

1:10PM PDT on Apr 29, 2012

No global warming, creationism, etc.? People's heads are kept in the sand to serve the interests of Shell Oil, BP, etc. To educate children and teach them all those silly beliefs is simply incredibly irresponsible. It makes me think of Aldous Huxley's book, 'Brave New World', except that now life on our planet is at stake.

12:38AM PDT on Apr 29, 2012

This is frightening - creationism , climate change denial , pro oil and nuclear power , even non compulsory voting to keep peoples heads in the sand ...
Parents would find it very difficult to keep track of what their kids are being taught as they work their guts out to pay the mortgage ...Billionaire vested interests donate course work books and texts (propaganda) and the stupid schools accept.

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