The Mad Rush against Polar Bears

NWF   |   March 11, 2007

So, what does Rush Limbaugh have against polar bears anyway? Poor Rush. He’s now reduced to calling weathermen liars and people who care about the plight of the polar bear wackos. Next he’ll be stealing candy from babies.

I suppose it was inevitable that Rush would start to lose it by accusing ABC’s Sam Champion and the National Wildlife Federation’s John Kostyack of "lying to their audiences" when discussing the science showing that global warming is threatening the future of polar bears in the wild.

His rambling segment on Thursday’s radio show reminded me of someone who likes to shut his eyes tight, stick his fingers in his ears and yell "La la la la la lal a! I can’t hear you!!" at any mention of actual facts he doesn’t want to accept.

To read his latest rant about polar bears, click here. Without using any actual scientific evidence, he just called the overwhelming scientific evidence linking polar bears and global warming wrong, wrong, wrong.

Well, actually, Rush, I have news for you.

– Current sea ice in the Arctic is declining at a rate of more than 23,000 square miles per year, or nearly nine percent per decade, and according to estimates provided by the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder the Arctic ice melting will accelerate in coming years until there will be no ice during the summmer minimums in late summer, 2040.

– A recent study by the U.S. Geological Survey’s Alaska Science Center discovered a "very dramatic" change in polar bear cub survival and estimated that only about 43 percent of the polar bear cubs in Alaska’ Beaufort Sea are surviving their first year as a result of shrinking ice habitat. Cub survival is down from about 65 percent survival measured in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

– And just last month, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the leading voice among climate scientists worldwide, reported there is more than a ninety percent chance that global warming is being caused by manmade burning of fossil fuels.

Scientists never give absolute statements so getting about 2,500 of the world’s best scientists and more than a hundred nations to agree a lowest common denominator IPCC statement should be compelling to all but perhaps Rush and his ditto heads.

The evidence for the polar bear’s future is so compelling, that even the the Bush administration is concerned enough to give the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service the go-ahead to consider listing the polar bear as threatened because of global warming. You know Rush is hitting hard times when he starts going against the Bush administration. This nonsensical rant, from the transcript of yesterday’s show, is where Rush really loses it. "Now, if the polar bears are disappearing and you’re up there on their turf and you’re drilling holes in their turf that they might fall into, and they come along and they don’t like this — and you’re trying to protect them and the environment — let them eat you! It’s the least you can do."

Earth to Rush: Elvis is dead. Global warming is real and getting much worse, And you need to take a vacation – why not go to the Arctic while it’s still there?

Here’s a link to the original Good Morning America segment on polar ice:

Published: March 11, 2007