Ryan Zinke, Secretary of the Interior, has put on his detective hat and has identified the miscreants who are responsible for the terrible wildfires that are burning up California—they are the environmentalists:
The US interior secretary, Ryan Zinke, has blamed environmentalists for California’s ferocious wildfires and claimed, contrary to scientific research, that climate change had “nothing to do” with them.*
It would be nice to say that Secretary Zinke’s headgear was a Holmesian deerstalker, but in reality Zinke, himself, is less a Sherlock than a Vidocq.
Eugène François Vidocq is considered the first private detective and was the model for Edgar Allan Poe’s fictional sleuth, C. Auguste Dupin. But before Vidocq turned to hunting criminals, he was one himself, with a long police rap sheet.
Now, to be fair, Zinke has not spent time behind bars, like Vidocq, but as Huffpost has put it:
With [Scott] Pruitt now gone [from the EPA], Zinke appears to have taken the reins as the most scandal-plagued member of President Donald Trump’s Cabinet.**
Here's part of Zinke's rap sheet:
The sweetheart Halliburton land deal, secret meetings, expensive trips on charter planes and helicopters, and several cases of mixing partisan politics with Interior business — all these and more are on the list of Zinke’s alleged abuses, wasteful spending, and conflicts of interest.***
However, again to be fair, Zinke has a challenger to that title in Wilbur Ross, the Secretary of Commerce:
If even half of the accusations [against Ross] are legitimate, the current United States secretary of commerce could rank among the biggest grifters in American history.***
Of course, Zinke's and Ross’ boss would give them both a run for their money.
But back to our main storyline.
One need not be a detective oneself to conclude that Zinke, in his claim to have discovered the culprits behind the California fires, has shown himself not to be a disciple of Holmes or Vidocq. He has let his ideological heart rule his forensic head. Even the most amateurish wannabe detective would not claim that environmentalists are to blame for the west coast inferno.
It was environmentalists with matches.