Top NASA climate scientist says he’s being censored by Bush admin

If Bush administration officials were trying to keep NASA’s chief climate scientist quiet, as he charges, they failed spectacularly. Instead they got a front-page story in The New York Times. In it, James Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, charges that since a lecture in early December in which he warned of dramatic changes from global warming and called for quick reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions, NASA headquarters has instructed agency spokesflacks — some of them political appointees — to screen his upcoming lectures, papers, and postings to Goddard’s website. The agency has also insisted that his press interviews be conducted with PR officials listening in. A NASA public-affairs director says it’s all about coordinating communications, not censorship: “People could see it as a constraint. As a manager, I might see it as protection.” With protection like this, who needs … er … ah, you know what we mean.