Logic only Inhofe could love

LOGIC ONLY INHOFE COULD LOVE…. Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) is still on his crusade over Alan Carlin, the global warming denier who works at the EPA as an economist, and whose “memo” about global warming was not taken seriously by actual climate scientists. It led to an interesting exchange this morning on Fox News between the right-wing senator and host Bill Hemmer.

INHOFE: Alan Carlin is a longtime 30-year employee, and he had access to the new science, which is really reversing a lot of the things that the scientific community thought were true ten years ago. They tried to suppress that. […]

HEMMER: Here’s what the EPA says, Senator. They say Carlin’s not a scientist, he included no original research in his report, and none of it was solicited by the EPA. It sounded like it was a side-job on the side … Do you see it that way?

INHOFE: No, I don’t see it that way at all. This guy’s been there for 30 years, Bill. I mean, you know, he’s not some new guy that was there. That’s his job.

Now, we already know that Carlin’s cut-and-paste document wasn’t “suppressed.” The EPA’s National Center for Environmental Economics allowed him to put together his memo, and it was reviewed by agency scientists.

But it’s hard not to admire Inhofe’s hysterical spin. What the senator can’t quite wrap his head around is that the duration of Carlin’s career is irrelevant. Whether Carlin has been an economist for 30 minutes or 30 years doesn’t change the fact that he’s not a climate scientist.

“That’s his job”? Well, crunching numbers is Carlin’s job. In this case, he went outside of his job to prepare “a ragbag collection of un-peer reviewed web pages, an unhealthy dose of sunstroke, a dash of astrology and more cherries than you can poke a cocktail stick at.”

Inhofe, in other words, doesn’t know what he’s talking about. What a surprise.

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson is scheduled to speak to the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works today, at which point Inhofe intends to throw a fit about Carlin’s “report.” Here’s hoping someone briefed Jackson on the unhinged questions she’s likely to receive from the Oklahoma Republican.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.