Earlier this week, the notorious Rush Limbaugh got in trouble for calling soldiers in Iraq opposed to the war "phony."

Thursday he called the science of ozone depletion "phony" and the science of climate change "fraudulent." Limbaugh went on to accuse Dr. James Hansen, America’s top climatologist, of being "dishonest," compared him to a "CIA double agent," and said he should be "drummed out of NASA."

Does anyone take Limbaugh seriously anymore? Apparently, the answer is yes. Here are facts and links for the open-minded:

  1. Freon and other chlorofluorocarbons do deplete ozone in the upper atmosphere, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, not to mention countless other scientific agencies, universities, and publications. Mario Molina and two other scientists shared the Nobel Prize in l995 for showing the destructive mechanism. Despite Limbaugh’s bombastic claim that "there is no way we could destroy the ozone," and despite regulation to control ozone-depleting agents, the risks — including a higher incidence of skin cancer and cataracts — are real.
  2. Limbaugh claimed that Hansen spoke out on global warming because he recently received $720,000 from financier George Soros. In fact, Hansen first warned Congress about global warming in 1989. In truth, after getting in hot water with the Bush administration for speaking out on how the White House rewrote and suppressed the facts of global warming on 60 Minutes, Hansen accepted some pro bono legal work from the Government Accountability Project, which is funded by Soros, but declined a $10,000 award it gives annually to whistleblowers to avoid any possible conflict of interest. Hansen adds (PDF): "I did not receive one thin dime from George Soros." More here on the origin of this bogus claim.

Limbaugh says that Hansen is "sort of like a spy, a CIA double agent or an FBI double agent who’s been feeding damaging information to the Soviets." He adds, "The whole thing is a hoax. It’s based on frauds. It’s based on people masking themselves as to who they really are, fraudulent science to boot."

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Hmmm. People masking themselves, hoaxes, frauds — now who does that sound like: Dr. James Hansen? Or Rush Limbaugh?

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