Earlier this week, Texas governor Rick Perry responded to critics who have been skeptical of his Presidential qualifications because of his embarrassingly poor college transcript. The governor replied that his academic performance is not nearly as important as the fact that he has “skills.” I agree that this is a valid point, but it is the same one that could be made by a high school dropout working as a successful fry cook in a Texas truck stop restaurant – and I’m not sure that flipping an omelette perfectly would be of much use in the White House.
Even less impressively, just yesterday the governor showed off his communications skills when, before a group of businessmen in New Hampshire, he claimed that, with respect to global warming, there are “a substantial number of scientists who have manipulated data so that they will have dollars rolling in to their projects.” This is a bold comment from someone who, again, had abysmal college grades in math, science, and even economics. Stranger still, Perry went on to say that, “Yes, our climates change. They’ve been changing ever since the earth was formed.” My question: Does that mean, governor Perry, that the earth’s climate has been changing for the past six thousand years, which is the age of our planet according to the Scripture read so literally by your evangelical supporters? I’m just wondering, since you seem so confident in your scientific acumen.
I fear that there are just two possible reasons for Rick Perry making such preposterous remarks: a. He is a liar and an opportunist who will say anything to get elected, meaning that, in the case of global warming, he will pander shamelessly to the same corporate interests that are in no small measure responsible for the phenomenon; or, b. He is a well-coached but dimwitted buffoon, at least where anything requiring an intellect beyond that possessed by an average ten-year-old is concerned.
I’m going with “b.” I find it impossible to believe that a governor of Texas could possibly lie to the American people to advance his own absurd agenda.