One of the things that irritates and amuses me in equal parts is the Left’s habit of crying “censorship” whenever someone disagrees with them. They deliberately (I think) confuse the distinction between government acts shutting down debate and mere disapprobation. Nothing shows the difference more clearly than this story about the climate “scientist” who testified before Congress that the Bush administration was muzzling him because his views about global warming:
A NASA scientist who said the Bush administration muzzled him because of his belief in global warming yesterday acknowledged to Congress that he’d done more than 1,400 on-the-job interviews in recent years.
James Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, who argues global warming could be catastrophic, said NASA staffers denied his request to do a National Public Radio interview because they didn’t want his message to get out.
But Republicans told him the hundreds of other interviews he did belie his broad claim he was being silenced.
“We have over 1,400 opportunities that you’ve availed yourself to, and yet you call it, you know, being stifled,” said Rep. Darrell Issa, California Republican.
Mr. Hansen responded: “For the sake of the taxpayers, they should be availed of my expertise. I shouldn’t be required to parrot some company line.”
So, despite 1,400 points of intersection between himself and the media, Mr. Hansen believes he was muzzled because he didn’t get to go on NPR. Wow, the tears are streaming down my cheeks even as I think about the suffering he must have experienced. Never mind that, in the real world, if you work for a company, you tow the company line. And in the real world, if you don’t like the company line, you leave the company.
In any event, this was a far cry from true government repression, of the type you see in, say, Egypt, where criticizing the government means torture and imprisonment. In the marketplace of ideas, he’s too lazy or unconvinced by his own rightness to even bother speaking up.
Hat tip: Drudge