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Sound Science for Thee, but Not for Me (does ethanol analysis apply in Obama’s new science world?)

By Jerry Taylor -- March 13, 2009

Earlier this week, President Obama signed an administrative directive to ensure that scientific fact – not ideological fancy – informs federal policy. Well, good for him. Now that he’s overturned the Bush administration’s prohibitions against using federal money to undertake some forms of research associated with embryonic stem cells, up next should be an administrative about-face on corn ethanol as a means of addressing climate change. Alas, the possibility that Obama will admit error on this matter is only slightly better than the possibility that Jessica Simpson will someday win the Nobel Prize for physics. Ideology trumping science? Bad. Politics trumping science? Business as usual.

Regardless, let’s quickly review the literature on ethanol and climate change.…