This one is a wee bit off-topic, but we’ve strayed before. The reasons we’re doing it this time are: first, because we’ve received several tips about it; second, it’s too insanely stupid to pass up; and third — although this isn’t specifically in today’s news — the guy is a creationist. We’re talking about Louie Gohmert, a Republican member of Congress from Texas.
A search on his name at ol’ Hambo’s website produces no hits. Same thing at the Discoveroids’ website. And yet, a Google search on “Gohmert evolution” produces over 276,000 hits. This guy is a blogger’s gold mine!
For today’s story, instead of using one of the national news sources that might be prejudiced, we’ll use a newspaper from Texas. In The Dallas Morning News we found a story titled Rep. Louie Gohmert asks if Forest Service can shift Earth’s or moon’s orbit to fight climate change. That’s what we’re looking for! Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:
If the U.S. Forest Service can do anything to change the orbits of the moon or Earth, Rep. Louie Gohmert wants to know. [Huh?] During a House hearing, the Tyler Republican stumped a top agency official by asking her about the Forest Service’s capabilities to relocate celestial bodies, given his view that humanity is not otherwise able to improve the climate — by cutting fossil fuel use, for instance.
Then they quote Gohmert asking his question in the hearing:
“I was informed by the past director of NASA that they have found that the moon’s orbit is changing slightly and so has the Earth’s orbit around the sun,” Gohmert said at the Tuesday hearing, noting “significant” solar storm activity this week. “Is there anything that the national Forest Service or BLM [Bureau of Land Management] can do to change the course of the moon’s orbit or the Earth’s orbit around the sun? Obviously, that would have profound effects on our climate.”
Brilliant question! Then what happened? The news story tells us:
There was a noticeable pause from Jennifer Eberlien, associate deputy chief of the Forest Service, a part of the Agriculture Department that manages 193 million acres around the country, about the area of Texas. BLM is actually part of the Interior Department, which also does not engage in space research. “I would have to follow up with you on that one, Mr. Gohmert,” Eberlien responded with a slight chuckle.
That was a very polite response. The Congressman then said:
“Well, if you figure out a way that you in the Forest Service can make that change, I’d like to know,” Gohmert said.
The newspaper tells us that others have commented on the exchange. For example:
Moriba Jah, an astrodynamics expert and professor at the University of Texas at Austin, called Gohmert’s suggestion “crazy” and “as feasible as making the sun rise in the west.” [Hee hee!] Satirical or not, Jah said, to hear someone in a position of such power “make statements that are blatantly dismissive of science … it makes me a bit nervous.”
The news story continues:
Social media users and Democrats also pounced. “Captain Marvel,” tweeted Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif. “She can alter planetary orbits with her superpowers. I’m going to work on a bipartisan resolution asking for her help.”
Ah, but does Gohmert:understand sarcasm? If not, that was wasted. Let’s read on:
“Louie Gohmert is an example of what happens when Texans wear their cowboy hats too tight,” read one tweet as another critic opined that Gohmert “never disappoints in the Department of Lunacy.” Gohmert’s office did not respond to requests for comment on whether he was being satirical, and he had not elaborated. It’s not the first time he’s touted theories that critics viewed as spaced out.
Okay, that’s enough from The Dallas Morning News. But if you look around, there’s no end to the “crazy Gohmert” stories over the years. You shouldn’t have any trouble finding one to talk about. Go ahead, have a ball!
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