June 29, 2016
I am continually amazed – and disappointed – by the fact that far too many Americans continue to rely upon and trust government institutions after repeatedly seeing agency after agency, institution after institution, and bureau after bureau, cheat, lie to them, misrepresent data and rob them of their liberties.
Count a government laboratory that was once operated by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) as yet another of example of this ongoing deceit.
As reported by The Daily Caller News Foundation, the Energy Geochemistry Laboratory in Lakewood, Colo., was closed recently, after investigators and a lawmaker revealed that, over a period of nearly 20 years and at a cost of $108 million, the laboratory had engaged in “disturbing” data manipulation with “serious and far ranging” effects.
The inorganic section of the USGS lab manipulated data on a range of topics, including many related to the environment, from 1996 to 2014. Worse, the manipulation was discovered in 2008 – the year President Obama was elected – but nevertheless continued for another six years.
Has anyone been held responsible?
“It’s astounding that we spend $108 million on manipulated research and then the far-reaching effects that that would have,” said Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-Ark., said at a House Committee on Natural Resources hearing. “We know how research multiples and affects different parts of our society and our economy and … if you’re working off of flawed data it definitely could be in a bad way.
“The problems were so severe, in fact, that the USGS has already closed the inorganic lab in question permanently,” he added.
The lab was shuttered, finally, in January. No word on whether anyone has been held responsible (financially or otherwise) for the manipulation, or what particular environmental data – no doubt fabricated to support certain environmental objectives and policies that came down from the White House – was changed.
The lawmaker cited a recently released Department of the Interior Inspector General (IG) report that said impacts from the changed data “are not yet known but, nevertheless, they will be serious and far ranging. The affected projects represented about $108 million in taxpayer funding from fiscal year 2008 through 2014.”
In addition, Westerman highlighted an interview that the IG did not include in its report.
“Tell me what you want and I will get it for you. What we do is like magic,” a former USGS official told auditors a former employee linked to the manipulation would say, according to the congressman, who also said that the IG’s interview notes make the context of that quote unclear.
“Given the lab’s history and that problems had already been identified when this interview was being conducted, such a statement seems potentially significant,” Westerman told Deputy IG Mary Kendall, a witness for the hearing.
“Your office explained that you do not know the context or veracity of this statement and that this issue was not part of the audit,” Westerman told Kendall.
Nevertheless, other scientists became aware that data manipulation was taking place and began using other labs.
This is exactly why we need MORE independent labs and scientists
Westerman – who has an engineering background – noted that flawed data can very often lead to flawed legislation and policy making, which have direct impacts on the American people.
“I’m not even sure what the scientific result[s] were used in,” he said. “A lot of the work that people do that’s based on scientific research is so important and if the base research is flawed, then that affects the work that goes out from there.”
This is exactly why citizen scientists and independently-owned and operated research facilities like CWC Labs are so important: They produce agenda-free scientific results.
“Consumer Wellness Center Labs specializes in the analytical testing of foods and dietary supplements with an emphasis on organic products,” notes the lab’s website. Built from the ground up by its director, Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, and author of the new book, Food Forensics, the lab recently received crucial credentialing and is now accepting commercial customers.
As more government institutions fail us (remember when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention actually had a decent reputation?), Adams and other independent scientists will increasingly be needed to fill the void and provide the world with scientific results that are not tainted by political agendas, financial ties or other ulterior motives.