You know, when you’re calling somebody “a flat-out moron,” you’d better be sure you’re not missing something. It’s extremely common to portray environmentalism, as practiced in present-day America, as the equivalent of a religion. Just the other day, for example, I wrote: “enviromentalism is the religion taught in public schools, and it’s the kind of religion done with shaming young people.” Here’s a World Net Daily article from back in 2008 called “The Climate Change Religion.” The Freakonomics blog had an item in 2009: “Is Climate-Change Belief a Religion?”(“Actually, yes…”). Here’s a piece in Forbes from last April: “Climate Change As Religion: The Gospel According To Gore.”
In this context, Perry’s invocation of Galileo makes perfect sense, and if anybody’s a flat-out moron here, it’s Fallows.
UPDATE: “On reflection, and in response to a torrent of near- identically phrased outraged mail”, Fallows apologizes:
I shouldn’t have called Gov. Rick Perry’s reference to Galileo during this week’s Republican debate “flat-out moronic.” That’s mean talk that I shouldn’t use about anyone, and I’m sorry.
Well okay, then. He continues:
I should just have said that his comment seemed ill-thought-out, weird, and self-defeating, for exactly the reasons I set out the first time through.
Now it becomes less of an apology, as Fallows unwittingly describes his own attempt to further explain his still-flawed original argument.
Not much of a backtrack. I don’t know if I’m responsible for any or much of his “outraged mail,” but if you feel like going over there now and telling him off, please word your email in a manner that displays the unique person that is you.