This morning, Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly balefully intoned that Carol Browner, President-elect Barack Obama’s selection as his White House climate adviser, was “a leader of a socialist group.” As banners blared “BROWNER BELONGED TO SOCIALIST GROUP SEEKING ‘GLOBAL GOVERNANCE’” and “SOCIALIST TIES,” Kelly interviewed inveterate climate denier Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), who called Browner “pretty extremist” and wondered:
Where do you draw the line between an extreme liberal and a socialist?
The reality is, as the Wonk Room previously reported, that Browner was a member of the Commission for a Sustainable World Society (CSWS), a climate change policy working group established in 2007 by Socialist International (SI), a global coalition of left-leaning political parties. The commission involves top officials and political leaders from democratic allies of the United States, including Great Britain, Sweden, Germany, Spain, Mexico, India, and Brazil. In a typical overreach to sell their talking points, Kelly and Inhofe demonstrated a shoddy understanding of reality:
Kelly confused “global government” with “global governance.” The threat of a totalitarian “global government” is a bete noire of right-wing extremists and Apocalyptic evangelicals. Global governance, in contrast, is “the management of global processes in the absence of global government.”
Kelly falsely claimed the commission believes “rich countries like the United States have the obligation to shrink their economies” to fight global warming. In fact, the commission’s joint statements call for “unrestricted market access” and “the financing and investment required to promote low carbon economic growth,” and claim “new technologies go hand in hand with economic growth and development” and “a socially and ecologically sustainable society can create new opportunities for economic growth.”
Kelly falsely claimed Browner was “the head” of the commission. The co-chairs of the commission are Ricardo Lagos, former President of the Republic of Chile and a Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General on Climate Change, and Göran Persson, former Prime Minister of Sweden.
Inhofe falsely claimed that CSWS and SI are two separate organizations. Browner’s sole involvement with SI is her participation in the commission. Contra Inhofe, SI is not “another one she was involved in.”
Are Inhofe and Kelly confused, ill-informed, or do they simply not care what is actually the truth? The Wonk Room reports, you decide.
At ThinkProgress, Faiz Shakir notes that Inhofe also warned of Browner’s ties to another dangerous organization: the Center for American Progress.