Bestselling author Mark Steyn was one of a number of "climate change" critics invited to testify at a US Senate subcommittee chaired by Senator Ted Cruz on Tuesday.
On the morning of the event, Senator Bill Nelson, the Florida Democrat and Ranking Member, sent a message, warning me that I was obligated to "respect the decorum of the Senate". I've been invited to Buckingham Palace, the White House and parliaments around the world, and nobody has ever felt it necessary to pre-issue such a warning. In the event, the US Senate has no "decorum" worthy of respect, as we'll get to in a moment. (...)
By that I mean that, when my pal Ezra Levant and I gave evidence (as we say in the Westminster tradition) in the Canadian Parliament, members from all parties turned up and asked thoughtful and engaged questions. When we run into each other in Montreal, the representatives of the Bloc Québécois and I do not even agree on what country we're in. But that afternoon we had a pleasant and civilized exchange, and one that had some rewardingly non-partisan after-glow in the months that followed. (...)
In the US Senate, at least on Tuesday, senators wander in and out constantly. (...) Whether this meets the "decorum" of the Senate, it certainly doesn't meet the decorum of life...
Take this guy Brian Schatz, the Senator from Hawaii. He did his shtick, lobbed a softball at his witness, Rear Admiral Titley, and stood up to leave. I said I'd like to respond, and he demurred on the grounds that he was outta there, he had to get back to washing his hair or whatever. I said I'd still like to respond to what he said, and so I did -- to an empty chair.
So by the time Senator Ed Markey turned up, I'd had enough of it. Markey is the Massachusetts guy (whom I discussed on the radio with Howie Carr yesterday afternoon) and he began by comparing Rear Admiral Titley to Galileo - at which point I threw up my arms. I would have let this twaddle go, except that Markey then went on to insult the three scientists on my right.
What a mistake...
Steyn: Do you know what the winters were like at Plymouth Rock, senator?
Markey: Well, here is the thing. We...
Steyn: You don't. How long has your family been in Massachusetts?
Markey: We are new arrivals and I have to admit...
Steyn: You should have been in there in 1750.
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