Last night on his CNN Headline News show, right-wing pundit Glenn Beck hosted global warming skeptic Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK). Beck allowed Inhofe to rant about how — with “all the liberals” running the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works — he was forced to sit through hearings on “that nice white fuzzy polar bear.”
Inhofe argued that the polar bear population isn’t endangered. “[I]f anything, it’s an overpopulation problem,” said Inhofe. Beck then jumped in and claimed that, in fact, the extinction of polar bears may be a good thing:
They eat people! For the love of Pete, they’re big, angry bears. They eat people. Not that I say we go out and kill all of them, but I mean, it doesn’t seem to be a problem here. Senator, I can’t take the — I can’t take the lies anymore.
There is currently an estimated 20,000–25,000 polar bears worldwide who are threatened with “losing their habitat and becoming extinct over the next 50 years” because of global warming and melting sea ice. The U.S. Geological Survey predicts that without action, “11 of the 19 subpopulations will be extinct by the middle of this century, with an additional three subpopulations vanishing shortly thereafter.”
On Wednesday, Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne skipped a Senate hearing on listing the polar bear as a threatened species. His agency missed a Jan. 9 deadline to decide on classifying the polar bear, in violation of the Endangered Species Act, according to Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA).
Perhaps if little furry bunnies — which do not eat people — were endangered, Beck would want to save them.
BECK: But while pictures like this may say a thousand words, I only actually need actually 10 words to tell you the truth. The polar bear population is up over 300 percent since 1972.
So, why, may I ask, are we holding Senate committee hearings to question whether or not to add the animal to the endangered species list if they’re reproducing faster than human beings right now? Senator James Inhofe is the senator from Oklahoma, ranking Republican on that committee.
It’s a lonely, lonely place for you right now.
INHOFE: That committee is lonely. We’ve got Hillary and we’ve got all the liberals on that side and Barbara Boxer clearly controls the votes in there. So we had yesterday a hearing on that nice white fuzzy polar bear.
BECK: Now, Senator, this is a projection, a projection that someday they’ll start to go down in population. Today, the increase is 400 percent. Are we going to put them on the endangered species list?
INHOFE: Well, you know, they may go on. We can’t really control that right now. But the idea that they’d be trying to do it, I think you said it right except you’re a little bit conservative.
Since 1950, we have quadrupled the number of polar bears. The populations have gone up from the range of 5,000 to 10,000 to 20,000 to 25,000. So if anything, it’s an overpopulation problem.
But you know what they’re trying to do, Glenn. How many times have I been on your show on the global warming Al Gore stuff? What they want to do is do what they can’t do legislatively and cause the Fish and Wildlife Service to say, anywhere that you’re using — having emissions of carbon dioxide, you’re going to have to stop doing it because that’s going to make its way up to the polar cap and it’s going to kill all the bears.
I mean, you can be on my patio in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with your outdoor cooker and have Fish and Wildlife say, well, you can’t do that because you might kill the polar bears. And polar bears are so pretty to look at.
BECK: They eat people! For the love of Pete, they’re big, angry bears. They eat people. Not that I say we go out and kill all of them, but I mean, it doesn’t seem to be a problem here. Senator, I can’t take the — I can’t take the lies anymore.