Right wing sites are loving the recent Ted Cruz interview with Texas Tribune reporter Jay Root, because Cruz decided to lecture Root on climate change. “Ted Cruz SCHOOLS journalist on climate change,” crows The Right Scoop. Rush Limbaugh’s site proclaims, “Cruz demolishes climate change alarmists.” Glenn Beck says, “Ted Cruz slams climate change supporters.” Would it surprise you to learn that Cruz got all of his “facts” wrong?
Root asks Cruz about several issues that he identifies as being important to younger voters. Cruz replies that he wants to address the issue of “global warming” first. He starts out by claiming that those who believe in man made climate change “don’t like to look at the actual evidence.” He then launches into a lecture about “satellite data,” indicating that there has been no warming for 17 years. That is followed by a soliloquy about a Newsweek article he said he was just reading, from the 1970’s, about “global cooling.”
The site Factcheck.org, decided to have a look at what Cruz had to say about climate change, and found everything he claimed, to be counterfactual. To start with, the Newsweek article he refers to, has since been debunked by many, including its own author. He also fails to mention that, in the 1970’s, there was no broad agreement among scientists about “global cooling,” as there is today about man made climate change. In fact, even around the time of the article cited by Cruz, there was more concern about warming than about cooling. Factcheck notes that a survey of peer reviewed literature between 1965 and 1979 found that there were only seven papers from that time period that were concerned about cooling, compared with 44 that were concerned about warming.
Cruz’s claim that there has been no warming for 17 years was also found wanting by Factcheck. They say that he cherry picked the year 1998, which was warmer than usual, and used that to claim that there has been no warming since then. Factcheck says that while it is true that the trend has been fairly flat in recent years, there have now been 360 months where the global average temperature has been above the 20th century average.
Why does Cruz think “global warming alarmists” are trying to get people concerned about it? Because, he says, now, as in the 1970’s, they want the government to take over control of the energy sector.
For good measure, Cruz gets his history wrong, when he compares “global warming alarmists” to “flat earthers,” and himself to Galileo. As Factcheck observes, Galileo’s dispute with the Catholic Church was over whether the earth revolves around the sun. It had been accepted as fact that the earth was round, long before Galileo.
Somewhere in Texas, another village is missing its idiot. Here’s what Cruz has to say, via RawStory/YouTube:
Image via Gage Skidmore/Flickr