Re: [asa] Global Warming and creationism in the news

From: Rich Blinne <rich.blinne@gmail.com>
Date: Fri Sep 05 2008 - 18:50:35 EDT

On Fri, Sep 5, 2008 at 1:32 PM, j burg <hossradbourne@gmail.com> wrote:

> One more item in the controversy:
>
> The Rep Party of Alaska platform says, in its section on education:
> "We support giving Creation Science equal representation with other
> theories of the origin of life. If evolution is taught, it should be
> presented as only a theory."
>
> I'm pretty sure the Texas platform says about the same thing. I don't
> know what the national party platform says on this.
>

Governor Palin has stated that education is a local matter. That's why it
was moot for her as a governor and doubly moot as Vice President. As for the
climate change stuff, Senator McCain was brought around while in committee.
Hopefully he can bring Governor Palin up to speed. One thing that gives me
pause, though, is her suing the Federal government over listing polar bears
as endangered, stating that doing so is the result of "extreme"
environmentalists. The loss of habitat that I have been documenting over the
last few months should be very, very obvious.

Here's some background yesterday from the AP:

WASHINGTON (AP) At the National Governors Association conference where she
first met John McCain, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin had other business: making
her case to Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne against classifying the polar
bear as a threatened species.

Months later she sued Kempthorne, arguing that the Bush administration
didn't use the best science in concluding that without further protection,
the polar bear faces eventual extinction because of disappearing sea ice as
the result of global warming.

Palin, McCain's vice presidential running mate, has had frequent run-ins
with environmentalists.

In her 20 months as governor, Palin has questioned the conclusions of
federal marine scientists who say the Cook Inlet beluga whale needs
protection under the federal Endangered Species Act.

She has defended Alaska's right to shoot down wolves from the air to boost
caribou and moose herds for hunters, and contrary to a view held by McCain
is not convinced that global warming is the result of human activity.

Environmentalists have nicknamed Palin the "killa from Wasilla," a reference
to the small town where she formerly was mayor.

"Her philosophy from our perspective is cut, kill, dig and drill," said John
Toppenberg, director of the Alaska Wildlife Alliance, maintaining she is "in
the Stone Age of wildlife management and is very opposed to utilizing
accepted science."

While acknowledging the climate is changing, Palin expresses doubt as to
whether emissions from human activities are causing it. McCain, on the other
hand, supports legislation to reduce heat-trapping pollutants, primarily
from the burning of oil and coal.

"John McCain was all about global warming and the integrity of the science.
The selection of Sarah Palin is a complete reversal from that position,"
said Rep. Brad Miller, D-N.C., who traveled to the South Pole with McCain in
2006 to visit with scientists studying climate change. "She is disturbingly
part of the pattern of the Bush administration in their approach to science
generally and the science of the environment in particular."

The McCain campaign Wednesday characterized Palin as a leader on climate
change, noting she set up a sub-cabinet office to map out state response
strategies and sought $1.1 million in federal funds to help communities
threatened by coastal erosion and other effects.

Palin's administration relied in part on research from scientists funded by
the oil industry to fight against the polar bear's listing, arguing that the
impact of global warming on the bear 20 years from now can't be predicted.
But e-mails obtained by a University of Alaska professor show that the
state's marine mammal experts supported the federal government's conclusions
on the bear.

On Thursday, the federal government announced that there was enough
scientific evidence to consider listing three ice seal species that inhabit
the waters of Alaska as threatened and endangered species because of melting
sea ice. The seals use the ice to give birth and raise their pups.

Doug Vincent-Lang, Alaska's endangered species coordinator, said the state
had not yet taken a position on the ice seals' status.

But he stressed that while there were differences in opinion about the
science, the state has supported the protection of other endangered species
and its position on the polar bear "was not a decision to protect resource
development in the state."

Supporters say Palin, a self-described hockey mom who knows how to handle a
gun and dress a moose and once worked as a commercial fisherman, is simply a
reflection of her home state, where the extraction of oil, natural gas,
gold, zinc, fish and other natural resources is the primary source of state
income and jobs.

The polar bear isn't the only wildlife issue where Palin's administration is
at odds with environmentalists and at times with the Bush administration and
members of Congress.

For example:

_Her administration disputes conclusions by the federal National Marine
Fisheries Service and its science advisers that the beluga whale population
is in critical danger. The state argues that 2007 data shows the whale
rebounding.

_Palin opposed a state ballot initiative to increase protection of salmon
streams from mining operations. It was defeated.

_She also opposed a ballot initiative barring the shooting of wolves and
bears from aircraft except in biological emergencies. It was also defeated.

Under Palin, the state Board of Game authorized for the first time in 20
years the shooting of wolves by state wildlife officials from helicopters.
The order resulted in the controversial shooting this summer of 14
one-month-old wolf pups taken from dens on a remote peninsula 800 miles
southwest of Anchorage an act that environmentalists claim was illegal.

State officials characterized the killings as humanitarian, saying the pups
would have suffered and eventually died without the care of their parents.
Environmentalists argued they were killed to boost caribou populations to
the benefit of hunters.

Like many other Alaska officials, Palin argues her critics don't understand
the North Country.

Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., who has complained Alaska is killing more
wolves than necessary and has pushed a bill that would put additional
restrictions on the aerial killing of predators, has been among Palin's
targets.

Miller "doesn't understand rural Alaska, doesn't comprehend wildlife
management in the North, and doesn't appreciate the Tenth Amendment of the
U.S. Constitution that gives states the right to manage their own affairs,"
Palin said in a press release a year ago.

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Received on Fri Sep 5 18:51:36 2008

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