From the Tell-Us-Something-We-Don’t-Already-Know department comes word that a 40 page report prepared for Representative Henry A. Waxman (D) concludes that the Bush administration manipulates, distorts or suppresses scientific data for their own political ends.
“The administration’s political interference with science has led to misleading statements by the president, inaccurate responses to Congress, altered Web sites, suppressed agency reports, erroneous international communications and the gagging of scientists,” the report added.
The White House spokesman, Scott McClellan, dismissed the report. He contended that its sponsor, Mr. Waxman, who is widely known for his aggressive inquiry into the tobacco industry, was seeking to score political points.
“This administration looks at the facts, and reviews the best available science based on what’s right for the American people,” Mr. McClellan said. “The only one who is playing politics about science is Congressman Waxman. His report is riddled with distortion, inaccuracies and omissions.”
I highlighted a bit of text there because it seems to be confirming the very thing McClellan is trying to deny. That the Bush administration picks and chooses it’s data based on their agenda. The article goes on to cite examples of various policies and reports that the administration has suppressed or modified to play down or remove topics they don’t agree with.
I’ve brought up before how this is just symptomatic of having Evangelical types in the White House. Much like Creationists who want to proclaim Evolution as “just a theory” who then turn around and cite the second law of thermodynamics (itself “just” a theory) as proof that Evolution can’t be possible, Evangelicals tend to pick and choose what they wish to acknowledge from the field of science based on what they feel the truth should be instead of what the truth actually is. This is a dangerous and foolish approach to determining policies that are supposed to be based on scientific research.
You can see this sort of thinking in just about every area of this administration. It’s also why they chose to include the questionable intelligence data in the State of the Union address on Iraq and it’s supposed attempts to gain nuclear materials that turned out to be false. There was some indication from the intelligence community that this was not a confirmed fact, but the administration wanted to use it and so they applied pressure until they got their way. To hell with confirmation, it supports the policy we want to promote!