Muckraker: Grist on Politics

Back in April, we reported that the American Government textbook in use in classrooms across the country implies that the cause of climate change is in doubt, and that global warming could even be a net benefit for the planet and all who dwell upon it.

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At the time, publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt assured concerned citizens that this was merely a flaw in older editions of the book, and that they “will be working with the authors to evaluate in detail the criticisms.” In These Times asked me to look into it the 2008 edition, and I discovered that the new version, also authored by conservative scholars James Q. Wilson and John J. DiIulio Jr., is pretty much exactly the same as the last.

The new edition includes lines like: “It is a foolish politician who today opposes environmentalism. And that creates a problem, because not all environmental issues are equally deserving of support. Take the case of global warming.” Another line tells students that, “Science doesn’t know how bad the green-house effect is.” At least they excise the phrase “if it exists at all” from the end of that sentence, which had been tacked on in the earlier edition.

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This is the most popular American government textbook in the country, used in hundreds of high school and college classrooms. You can read the rest of the story here.