Why is James Hansen Still Employed?
NASA physicist Dr. James Hansen has a long and colorful record. He was born and raised in Dennison, Iowa in which he received all three of his degrees at the University of Iowa. According to the biography on his website, while attending school Hansen took an interest in the science and research done at James Van Allen’s space program. Upon graduating he studied Astrophysics and Astronomy in Japan and when he returned to the U.S. in 1967 he gained employment with the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) which he now heads.
In addition to a well credentialed background in climate science, Hansen is also an adviser to former Vice President Al Gore in which he consulted on the science for the movie An Inconvenient Truth. Hansen is not only a scientist, consultant, and bureaucrat, he is also a hardcore environmental activist. He has been arrested on multiple occasions for activities related to environmental issues. The first time was in 2009 with actress Darryl Hannah when the two protested with environmentalist groups over a mountaintop removal mining in West Virginia. He was arrested in front of the White House for the same issue in 2010. Hansen was arrested in 2011 and six days ago in front of the White House again this time protesting the Keystone Pipeline.
Worst of all he has defended environmentalists who have conducted acts of sabotage. In 2008, Hansen flew to Great Britain to testify at a jury trial on behalf of Greenpeace activists who were on trial for vandalizing a coal plant arguing that its emissions had contributed to rising sea levels and the extinction of 400 species. Thanks to his testimony all six defendants were acquitted. What should be of further concern is not only Hansen’s activism on the taxpayer dime and defense of vandalism but how he is willing to resort to manipulating science to achieve his goal of eliminating not only fossil fuels but all forms of industrialization. In 2011 most of GISS’s thermometers located in Canada used to measure world global temperatures have had their data tampered with giving the impression that the world is warming more than cooling.
During August of last year, Hansen was quoted by the Canadian Broadcast Company that there is increasing amounts of drought that is related to global warming. However, a response by former Virginia State Climatologist Dr. Patrick Michaels tells a different story:
Hansen claims that global warming is associated with increased drought in the US. This is a testable hypothesis which he chose not to test, and, because PNAS isn’t truly peer-reviewed for Members like him, no one tested it for him.
I have [examined] drought data [that] are from NCDC, and the temperature record is Hansen’s own. His hypothesis is a complete and abject failure.
This in addition to a number of other instances where James Hansen has misrepresented the facts regarding global warming coupled with his anti-industrial activism Hansen’s statements should be give pause to anyone regardless of their views. For example, a few years ago he equated the shipping of coal by train to how Jews were shipped to concentration camps in Nazi Germany. Consider other comments he made in 2009 about coal making comments modified comparing the shipment of coals on trains to the Jewish Holocaust:
Coal is the single greatest threat to civilization and all life on our planet … the dirtiest trick that governments play on their citizens is that they are working for ‘clean coal’. The trains carrying coal to power plants are death trains. Coal-fired power plants are factories of death.
Hansen has also advocated putting oil company executives on trial for crimes against humanity and nature for spreading (in his view) doubts about global warming and climate change. In an interview with the UK Guardian he in 2008 said:
When you are in that kind of position, as the CEO of one the primary players who have been putting out misinformation even via [organizations] that affect what gets into school textbooks, then I think that’s a crime.
As a result of all of Hansen’s recent high profile activities, a group called the American Tradition Institute (ATI) is seeking documentation related to his receiving $1.6 million in outside, direct cash related to his activism. The group also alleges that Hansen has broken numerous policies related to the agency’s code of conduct and the Hatch Act. More specifically, through the FOIA request ATI is looking to resolve litigation the group initiated due to NASA’s initial refusal to comply with a public inquiry for financial documents related to Hansen’s activities.
Regardless if Hansen’s activism has gone so far as to draw the ire of his colleagues. In 2009 James Hansen’s former boss at GISS Dr. John S Theon stated Hansen embarrassed NASA with his claims on climate changes and (despite his statements to the contrary) was never censured:
Hansen was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress…
I suppose it makes sense that James Hansen has become more vocal in recent years since President Barack Obama’s election. One indication that the President will refuse to prosecute causes the Left supports is when Attorney General Eric Holder refusal to prosecute New Black Panthers after they publicly announced their putting a bounty on the head of George Zimmerman. An activity that, to his credit, even Jesse Jackson condemned.
James Hansen’s activism not only demonstrates his hatred of civilization but also his willingness to lie and manipulate the truth in order to achieve his goal(s). I resent my tax dollars paying for his activities especially since he is obviously using his title and office as a means of promoting his anti-human crusade. The underpinnings of environmentalism romanticize peasant life and that is the level of living Hansen and groups like Greenpeace wish to reduce mankind to a caveman like existence. In 2008 one NASA administrator stated he felt it was time for Hansen to go citing numerous instances of him flagrantly disregarding federal employment policies. Because of his activities, his ignoring his employer’s policies, and regardless if Obama is protecting him Van Jones’s termination after a public campaign sponsored by Glenn Beck to sack him makes it clear no one is immune from public pressure. I plan on contacting NASA and calling for Hansen’s termination. I ask you do the same.