Posted by: Barry Bickmore | April 20, 2013

My Response to Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah)

The editorial board for The Salt Lake Tribune has been mercilessly criticizing Rep. Chris Stewart (R-UT) for ignoring the scientific evidence for human-caused climate change, even though he has been appointed chairman of the House subcommittee on the Environment.  Stewart is unapologetic, and the Tribune published an op-ed by him last week, in which he tried to justify his uninformed opinion.  I responded with my own op-ed, which the Tribune published today.  Enjoy.



  1. Well done, Barry! Not that it will matter much to Stewart. He’s a politician, after all. He won’t change his opinion until he finds his re-election is in trouble because of his position on this issue.

    • I read your article this morning and was pleased with yet another rebuttal by a reputable and articulate opponent. As “Marco” in the post above states, I too doubt that his position on the issue will change until the political landscape requires that he make a U-turn. The sad truth is that his position on the issue is a perfect reflection of the position of a majority of his constituents populating the second district. They also are skeptical of the science. We all remember what former Governor Huntsman said in his campaign for President last year, “I believe in Climate Change, call me crazy.” The truth is that the Republican Party has dug its heals in on the topic and sadly it will take a barrage of expensive climate disasters (disasters which affect them personally) before they will be motivated to change their opinions.

      • It’s “heels”, Kirt!

        And the problem here is investment. They’ve defined themselves in their argument, they are no longer arguing the point, they are fighting against admitting failure. It’s no longer about climate, but about them personally.

        “Investment” is why, in a brainstorming exercise, you don’t make any judgement on a statement until done: if you start arguing for the statement, then you start investing yourself in it being right. And then it’s a bit more difficult to look at the idea objectively.

        It was one of the reasons why science papers were in passive voice: “X was done” not “I did X”.

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