Evidently when liberals lose a debate on the facts, they just declare themselves the winner and commence beating up their opponents. That’s what Mark Hertsgaard is doing in the Politico today. He compares GW skeptics today to the Catholic Church that took a few centuries to acknowledge that Galileo had nailed the earth-rotates-round-the-sun model. Here’s a taste of Hertsgaard’s intemperate arguments.

When virtually every major scientific organization in the world, including the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and its counterparts in 18 other industrial countries, has affirmed that man-made climate change is real and extremely dangerous, only a crank would continue to insist that it’s all a left-wing plot.

What, are all these organizations and the thousands of scientists associated with them part of a vast conspiracy? Are they all lying careerists or incompetent buffoons? That is the only logical conclusion to draw from the Republicans’ continuing insistence that climate science is bogus.

Despite having no more scientific credibility than the Flat Earth Society, the climate cranks have held our nation’s climate policy hostage for decades. One reason the United States has done so little to reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the past 20 years is that our government has listened as much to these climate cranks as to real scientists.

Unpack that a bit and you have fallacious appeals to authority, followed by ad hominem attacks and insults. That’s not science, though having worked around more than a few scientists in my time, it’s unfortunately not uncommon behavior for scientists to engage in. Hertsgaard never deals honestly with the ClimateGate emails, which provide extremely strong evidence that the scientists at the heart of the debate were and still are cooking the books. It’s as if “hide the decline” never entered the debate. It’s as if none of the pile of information showing real and widespread fraud done in the name of global warming alarmism never happened at all.

That’s what I call living in denial.