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I don’t usually post political stuff to this blog, so I may need for you all to indulge me. I’m pretty vocal on my Twitter, Google Plus and Facebook accounts when it comes to politics, especially American politics. The main reason behind my fascination is not just the circus act aspect of the whole thing, but because it’s at least partially true that if America sneezes the rest of the world can catch a cold. American internal policy is not divorced from foreign policy.

So I thought I’d talk about Rick Perry. Rick Perry is the current governor of Texas and is currently running in the republican primaries for the presidential nomination. If Perry wins the nomination from the republican party then he will, most likely, face Barack Obama in the presidential election in November of 2012. What stuck in my craw regarding Rick Perry is his blatant discrediting, and often complete ignoring of scientific evidence, so I felt compelled to write the following.

Now that you’re all caught up on the context, on to my observations on Rick Perry.

The crucial problem with Rick Perry is not his abhorrent policies, his hypocrisy, or his rich donors, although those are problems.

The problem with Rick Perry is that he claims there is great debate over evolution, climate change, abstinence and the death penalty. Now while there may be merits to each of these arguments, no matter how slim, Perry does not argue those merits, and he doesn’t particularly debate his own positions.

The problem with Rick Perry is that he disagrees with evidence that is plainly presented to him.

On abstinence: Rick Perry Has a George Bush Moment

Now he could be arguing that abstinence is 100% effective when applied correctly [Unless you’re the virgin mary] but he’s arguing that it’s the best method of contraception to be taught in schools. He doesn’t argue the evidence, he argues his faith, or his belief or whatever.

Rick Perry – 0, Evidence – 1

For the other points on the death penalty, evolution and global climate change see after the jump.

On the death penalty: Rick Perry’s “Ultimate Justice”

Perry claims that the majority of Americans are in favour of capital punishment, and while the poll I’m looking at from 2009 states that 65% of Americans support capital punishment, it also states that when given the choice between capital punishment or life imprisonment 48% choose imprisonment over 47% choosing to support the death penalty

Also if Rick Perry believes that the death penalty is a deterrent, why are so many people in his state being executed by the state? If it was a deterrent, there would be nobody on death row.

Rick Perry – 0, Evidence – 2

[2009 death penalty poll]


Perry claims that evolution is a “theory that’s out there” and that it has “gaps”. The theory of evolution does contain some gaps I will admit, however the aim of science is to close those gaps. Stating that a theory has faults is no reason to disregard the theory, it’s a reason to better that theory.

I have not heard Rick Perry offer evidence as to why creationism is a better theory than the theory of evolution. Science is about making a theory more robust, and rejecting less robust theories.

If Perry has a “belief” about evolution then he doesn’t have any evidence. Science is not the domain of beliefs, it’s the domain of facts and evidence.

Rick Perry – 0, Evidence – 3

On climate change: Rick Perry on Global Warming – Presidential Debate 2011

Perry again makes the unfounded claim that the jury is out on climate change. There is debate among scientists as to whether man is responsible for global climate change, but the debate is not whether it’s occurring or not, the debate is about degrees of magnitude, and specific results. The results are in and 97-98% of scientists in the field agree that global warming/climate change is being contributed to by man. [PDF link here]

Perry comes out with the down home country sentiment “Galileo got outvoted for a spell” which is not the issue. Facts are not voted on. Besides Galileo was “outvoted” by the catholic church, a religious organization. The catholic church has a horrible record on acknowledging the evidence. That and when prompted to name a scientist the best that Rick Perry could do was Galileo, whom died 369 years ago.

Rick Perry – 0, Evidence – 4

As a quick disclaimer, this post was intended to show you that Rick Perry does not hold evidence in high esteem. Whether he disagrees with the evidence, doesn’t believe it, or flat out ignores it; he’s wrong.

These are 4 examples of Perry’s key opinions, and I have provided refutations of those points based on the evidence, and Perry’s position falls flat every time.

Never trust a man that does not agree with evidence, or facts.

Comment is free, but I will not allow this post to be hijacked.