When it comes to getting accurate, reliable information on global climate change, more Americans trust Fox News than the president. That's a problem, the Huffington Post points out, while President Obama tends to contradict himself by insisting that we need to fight climate change and then signing off on fracking and offshore drilling, Fox News is an anti-science mess that seems to take particular glee in spreading misinformation and straight-up lies about the realities, and dangers, of global warming.
But more people do trust astrophysicist and "Cosmos" host Neil deGrasse Tyson than either of those entities, according to a recent poll of 1,016 Americans from St. Leo University, and about the same proportion trust the mainstream media. To be sure, that's still only 22 percent of people in both cases, but it's somewhat reassuring.
Most strange, from these results, is that the largest proportion of respondents -- 45 percent -- say they trust non-government scientists and educators, while only 13 percent trust the U.S. government. In other words, nothing we learn from government agencies like NASA, on whose satellites we rely for information on sea level rise, ice melt and air pollution, and NOAA, which funds "high-priority climate science, assessments, decision support research, outreach, education and capacity-building activities" to help us understand, mitigate and prepare for the impacts of climate change, can be trusted.
The conclusion we can take from all this, I guess, is that Americans are pretty darn confused about where reliable information comes from.
On the bright side, thought, almost no one said they trust Rush Limbaugh (6 percent), business or industry groups (5 percent), or utility companies (5 percent) -- the only source of climate information that polled worse, with three percent of respondents saying they trusted them on climate, were "entertainers and celebrities." Looks like Sen. Inhofe's conspiracy theory about Barbra Streisand engineering the entire climate change "hoax" might be catching on...