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House Republicans demand Investigation of Wegener

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In an early flexing of their new Congressional muscle and in apparent reprisal for attacks on a party favourite, George Mason University statistical outlier Edward Wegman, newly-elected Republicans are understood to be demanding an investigation into the scientific work of the late Alfred Wegener. Having discovered Wegener after a late-night attempt to google ‘Wegman’, party staffers were amazed and horrified at the implications of his published research. Now fully informed, orthodox Republican representatives are outraged that Wegener’s theories of continental drift, still available in books that have not yet been burned, appear to rely heavily on evidence from the now-discredited Southern Hemisphere; and they point out that his repeated use of word ‘hemisphere’ itself betrays an insinuation that the Earth is not flat. The few remaining moderate Republicans are uncomfortable that Wegener’s theories appear to require that the Earth is more than 6000 years old, although they note that Australian researchers have recently proposed a modification to the theory featuring faster drift, consistent with a younger planet.

GOP policy chiefs point out the contrasts between Wegener’s findings and Wegman’s: Wegener accepted the existence of the Southern Hemisphere, comprehensively
refudiated by Wegman; Wegener had trouble getting his theories accepted by influential geophysicists, whereas Wegman’s hemisphere-denial has been supported by no less than the American Geophysical Union; Wegener was a meteorologist and therefore on the climate-science gravy-train whereas Wegman is a statistician and therefore above reproach; Wegener performed original, unsupported research whereas Wegman has recapitulated the results of well-regarded earlier work (editing them for clarity where necessary); Wegener argued against networks of ephemeral land-bridges whereas Wegman places great importance on networks of sociable researchers; and Wegener’s material was so contentious he had to write all of it himself whereas the parts of Wegman’s work not written by earlier researchers were written by one or more of his graduate students. Such contrasts clearly demonstrate that Wegener’s conclusions are fraudulent and should lead to jail time.

Wegener’s various home institutions are reported to have refused to hand over all of his emails and to direct him to appear before a Congressional committee on the grounds that he died in 1930. Republicans see this as clear evidence that incriminating emails between Wegener and the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit have been deleted. The institutes’ more fundamental argument, that Congress has no authority in Germany and Austria, has been refudiated by a couple of geographically-savvy representatives who, using a new Republican innovation called a
map, have determined that the town of Germany is in Wisconsin and is therefore probably subject to Federal law. They have so far failed to locate the town of Austria. Regardless of whether they find it, action against Wegener is by no means certain as there is a split in Republican ranks on the issue. Representative John Stinkmaus believes that any attempt to impeach Wegener will be fruitless because “God would not have allowed anybody as dangerous as Alfred Wegener to exist”. His opinion is expected to resonate with members of the Tea Party movement.