September 7, 2019

Generally speaking, we like to think of the great bureaucracy of the federal government that operates irrespective of politics. It's not true, but certainly many of the pundits who told us liberals to calm down in 2000 and again in 2016 as democracy was robbed from us that the federal government was so large and functioned mostly autonomously that one president couldn't do a lot of damage.


Still, it's jarring when we see a department that is supposed to be entirely scientifically-based, like the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA), making overtly political and manifestly false statements, merely to protect the rapidly decompensating ego of Donald Trump.

It has not gone over well in the environmental community.

Many critics say NOAA’s decision to back Trump is putting politics before facts and undermining forecasters’ ability to carry out their mission to protect life and property, while eroding public trust. They also worry about how the statement will affect Weather Service forecasters’ morale.

Three former NOAA heads have expressed this concern. Kathryn Sullivan, a former NASA astronaut who ran the agency under President Barack Obama, said that throughout NOAA’s history, the agency — including its political appointees — has committed "to not let any political factors sway the scientific credibility and clarity of Weather Service forecasts and warnings.”

She stated: “The anonymous and disingenuous statement NOAA tweeted out is a major breach of scientific integrity that damages the NWS and stains the agency’s leadership.”

The NOAA statement was officially "anonymous," but a sharp Twitter user looked into who is in charge of communications for NOAA and noted a very telling past CV.

That's right, Julie Kay Roberts was formerly a member of the Donald Trump 2016 campaign and Inaugural Committee. Isn't that convenient?

Greg Sargent of the Washington Post notes that this is not the first time we've seen minions retconning Trump's addled brain spewing.

Can you help us out?

For nearly 20 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit, but now Facebook is drowning us in an ocean of right wing lies. Please give a one-time or recurring donation, or buy a year's subscription for an ad-free experience. Thank you.


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service for information on our posting policy.