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Mon Sep 9, 2019, 07:57 PM

It's Not the Storm; It's the Cover-Up


It’s Not the Storm; It’s the Cover-Up
The president’s initial misstatement about the danger Hurricane Dorian posed to Alabama was relatively minor. His actions since then pose an actual threat to public safety.
5:17 PM ET
David A. Graham

President Donald Trump’s mind-bending debacle over Hurricane Dorian and Alabama comes to resemble the storm itself more by the day: unpredictable in course, lingering far longer than anyone hoped or expected, and ultimately disastrous.

There’s still no compelling explanation for why Trump has become so obsessed with the particular claim that he was right when he said that Dorian was headed for Alabama. (It was not.) Whatever the reason for his fixation, it has transformed an otherwise workaday gaffe—a simple, nearly harmless misstatement—into a far more dangerous assault on public safety.


On Saturday, the Post reported that on September 1, within hours of Trump’s misstatement about Alabama, and after the NWS Birmingham tweet, NOAA warned staffers via email not to contradict Trump. Or, to put that another way: NOAA had instructed weather forecasters not to correctly report the weather forecast, for fear of hurting the president’s fragile feelings. Instead, staffers were told to offer no opinion at all, even though their job is to forecast the weather. Today, the Post reported that NOAA’s chief scientist—who is only in the job in an acting capacity—is investigating the press release, which he labeled political.

“The value of our science is in the complexity of our understanding, our ability to convey that understanding to a wide audience of users of this information, and to establish and sustain the public trust in the truth and legitimacy of that information,” Craig McLean, the scientist, wrote to staff. “Unfortunately, the press release of last Friday violated this trust and violated NOAA’s policies of scientific integrity.”


It’s already hard for government officials to persuade people in a storm’s path to evacuate, because many people don’t believe forecasters. But it’s one thing to disbelieve the weatherman because he told you it would rain and it didn’t. It’s even harder to trust the forecast when you know that workers at government agencies are acting under explicit instructions not to contradict the president, on pain of firing.

“If the public cannot trust our information, or we debase our forecasters’ warnings and products, that specific danger arises,” NOAA’s McLean wrote in his email to staff. Next time a storm approaches, where can Americans go for reliable information? Not to Trump, of course. But can they trust official forecasts from government agencies? On August 31, that question was easy to answer. Now it is much cloudier.

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Reply It's Not the Storm; It's the Cover-Up (Original post)
babylonsister Sep 9 OP
Hermit-The-Prog Sep 9 #1

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Sep 9, 2019, 08:14 PM

1. the POS in the WH has zero credibility

Any who bend reality to serve the fool, damages their own credibility, perhaps irreparably.

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