RUH ROH

Hanes HallbirnThursday,29 November 2012

The Snap:

U.S. Congressman Lamar Smith will soon chair the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. Smith, a Republican from Texas, was nominated for the post by U.S. House Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday. He is perhaps best known in technology circles as the sponsor of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), a controversial bill that was ultimately shelved after critics publicized its potentially chilling effects to free speech.

The Download:

Let’s reviews Smith’s credentials related to science, space and technology, shall we?

Science: Smith is a believer in the theory that scientists are conspiring to spread a giant lie about climate change, according to Mother Jones. But hey, at least his website mentions that he is “concerned about the environment.” Slow. Clap.

Technology: Smith, whose website was famously outed for violating copyright laws during the SOPA debate, is one of the most infamous enemies of the technology industry.

Space: NASA has satellites. Those satellites show a bunch of bad shit happening to the Earth. Smith just doesn’t believe those satellites show human-caused activity. On the bright side, however, Smith is a proponent of encouraging a commercial space industry. He also talks a good game about promoting legislation to spur space-based scientific discoveries.

Let’s review: Science? Not so much. Technology? Did I mention SOPA? Space? Meh. A mixed bag. The guy has to sound space-friendly with NASA in his backyard.

This is the best the U.S. House of Representatives can do?

Hat Tips:

Huffington Post, The Verge, Image Credit: Ryan J. Reilly (Flickr)

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