A shrewd person not guided by principles, especially a politician
If [Hillary] Clinton wants to tell a better American story and have people to come to a consensus about who we are, she has to tell the story straight and then explain how we can best try to live up to our higher ideals in the future. Constantly telling ourselves a bunch of fairy tales about how great we are has painted us into a corner in which the worst elements of our leadership can rationalize any behavior —- including torture and indefinite detention in prison camps —- and nobody is willing to hold them accountable for it. The funny thing is that the old idea that the monarch was infallible and ordained by God is exactly what the American revolutionaries were rebelling against. I’m going to guess they didn’t anticipate that we would imbue our new country as a whole with the same nonsense.
Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), taking the stage after brief remarks from a meteorologist and several Heartland officials, kicked things off with a wild rant about how nearly every environmental scandal of the last three decades has turned out to be a hoax.
"The ozone hole is sort of like global warming, and was sort of an exaggerated position on some readings," Rohrabacher mused. "Remember acid rain?" asked the congressman. That too "became a non-issue" after a report claimed that human activity had little relation to the problem. The liberals, Rohrabacher said, never apologized to President Ronald Reagan for lambasting his refusal to act on it in the 1980s.
In between these remarks came another whopper. “I don’t know whether or not fluoridating the water helps people’s teeth become better or not,” said Rohrabacher, invoking his childhood memories. “I don’t know that,” he continued, “But I do know that in this country, we should be the ones who should be deciding what we put into our bodies one way or the other, not the federal government or the local government putting fluoride into our water!”
The water fluoridation screed elicited support from the crowd. But I noticed the gentleman sitting next to me, a corporate attorney named Larry Kogan seeking to overturn the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s endangerment finding on climate science—which paved the way for the regulation of carbon emissions—with a grimace on his face. He had clapped for every other applause line, but sat on his hands for this one.
None of Rohrabacher’s claims, of course, resemble anything close to reality. The ozone depletion problem, which is well documented, was addressed effectively through regulations to curb chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) from certain products. The 1990 amendments to the Clean Air Act, which passed with bipartisan support, back when the Koch brothers held less sway over the GOP and pro-environment Republicans could still get elected to Congress, largely solved the problem of acid rain by creating a cap and trade program to reduce emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOx).
The evils of water fluoridation have been a favorite conspiracy theory that took root in the American psyche thanks to the efforts of the John Birch Society, the right-wing precursor to the Tea Party. Fringe activists have claimed that fluoridation lowers IQ and causes cancer—but there is no evidence to support either theory. Decades of research show that adding fluoride to drinking water is indeed one of the most effective strategies for reducing tooth decay.
Dana Rohrabacher, of course, is a member of the House Science Committee.(via jenn2d2)