Heartland Institute budget and strategy revealed

[Update Feb. 15.  John Mashey has released a very timely report on Heartland and SEPP, Fake science, fakexperts, funny finances, free of tax, at Desmogblog (PDF 5Mb) with  summaries from Richard Littlemore,  and Mashey himself.]

[Update Feb. 15. Several news outles (e.g. the Guardian) are reporting that Heartland  has branded one of the Heartland documents, the 2012 Climate Strategy, to be a forgery. (See also the Heartland press release).  Since its authenticity is in question, I have decided to remove quotes from it as well as the link to that particular document. The Heartland projects discussed remain the same. I have removed one paragraph quoting the “expanded communication strategy”.]

[Update Feb. 23. On Feruary 20, Peter Gleick, head of the Pacific Institute, admitted to using deception to obtain the Heartland documents and has apologized for doing so. He says he did so in a misguided effort to confirm details in the controversial Climate Strategy memo that he had received anonymously in the mail. For its part, Heartland branded Gleick’s story as “unbelievable”, implicitly accusing him of having forged the document. ]

==============================================

DesmogBlog today released an archive of Heartland Institute budget and  strategy documents apparently leaked by someone with high level access.

An anonymous donor calling him (or her)self “Heartland Insider” has released the Heartland Institute’s budget, fundraising plan, its Climate Strategy for 2012 and sundry other documents (all attached) that prove all of the worst allegations that have been levelled against the organization.

The documents give a clear picture of Heartland money flows, showing exact amounts being paid to Heartland employees, and more importantly, the scientists involved in the ongoing NIPCC effort to disrupt the forthcoming IPCC AR5.

Heartland’s  list of  major projects also includes a new K-12 “global warming curriculum”.   The curriculum will promote the idea  that anthropogenic climate change is  a “major scientific controversy”, and seems to steer clear of the actual science.

Dr. Wojick proposes to begin work on “modules” for grades 10-12 on climate change (“whether humans are changing the climate is a major scientific controversy”), climate models (“models are used to explore various hypotheses about how climate works. Their reliability is controversial”), and air pollution (“whether CO2 is a pollutant is controversial. It is the global food supply and natural emissions are 20 times higher than human emissions”).

This “teach the controversy” approach (as opposed to teaching the actual science)  seems similar to  the anti-science effort of the Fraser Institute a couple of years back.

And most of Heartland’s funding sources have now been laid bare, with the notable exception of the  tightly guarded identity of a single “anonymous donor” who has given $13 million over the last five years. Other donors range from the Charles Koch foundation down through several recognizable tobacco and pharmaceutical companies, and even Microsoft.

Here are three  two of the most important released documents, with some highlights from each.

2012 Fundraising Plan (includes project descriptions)

Here are key excerpts from the Heartland’s the fund raising plan document, featuring two of 10 new and relaunched projects, and speak for themselves.

A major new project is the Global Warming Curriculum for K-12 Schools.

Many people lament the absence of educational material suitable for K-12 students on global warming that isn’t alarmist or overtly political. Heartland has tried to make material available to teachers, but has had only limited success. Principals and teachers are heavily biased toward the alarmist perspective. Moreover, material for classroom use must be carefully written to meet curriculum guidelines, and the amount of time teachers have for supplemental material is steadily shrinking due to the spread of standardized tests in K-12 education.

… Dr. [David] Wojick has conducted extensive research on environmental and science education for the Department of Energy. In the course of this research, he has identified what subjects and concepts teachers must teach, and in what order (year by year), in order to harmonize with
national test requirements. He has contacts at virtually all the national organizations involved in producing, certifying, and promoting science curricula.

Dr. Wojick proposes to begin work on “modules” for grades 10-12 on climate change (“whether humans are changing the climate is a major scientific controversy”), climate models (“models are used to explore various hypotheses about how climate works. Their reliability is
controversial”), and air pollution (“whether CO2 is a pollutant is controversial. It is the global food supply and natural emissions are 20 times higher than human emissions”). Wojick would produce modules for Grades 7-9 on environmental impact (“environmental impact is often difficult to determine. For example there is a major controversy over whether or not humans are changing the weather”), for Grade 6 on water resources and weather systems, and so on.

The strategy also calls for continued support for the so-called Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) and its contributors. A major new edition is planned to counter the real IPCC’s Ar5, to be released in 2013.

Heartland sponsors the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), an international network of scientists who write and speak out on climate change. Heartland pays a team of scientists approximately $300,000 a year to work on a series of editions of Climate Change Reconsidered, the most comprehensive and authoritative rebuttal of the United Nations’ IPCC reports. Another $88,000 is earmarked for Heartland staff, incremental expenses, and overhead for editing, expense reimbursement for the authors, and marketing.

NIPCC is currently funded by two gifts a year from two foundations, both of them requesting anonymity. In 2012 we plan to solicit gifts from other donors to add to what these two donors are giving in order to cover more of our fixed costs for promoting the first two Climate Change Reconsidered volumes and writing and editing the volume scheduled for release in 2013. We hope to raise $200,000 in 2012.

(For those interested, Mike Mann and Gavin Schmidt delivered a devastating critique of an earlier edition of the NIPCC back in 2008).

The 2012 budget document (see below) calls for monthly stipends to NIPCC editors Craig Idso ($11,600), Fred Singer ($5,000) and Robert Carter ($1,667).

Canadian NIPCC chapter authors listed as receiving ongoing Heartland support in the form of monthly stipends include:

  • MadhavKhandekar (Chapter 1.3, Extreme Events, Environment Canada)
  • Mitch Taylor (Chapter 2.2, Terrestrial Animals, Lakehead University)

Khandekar is best known as long time science advisor to the Alberta-based Friends of Science (and he’s long gone from Environment Canada, by the way). Taylor has been explaining to all who will listen (such as the Frontier Centre for Public Policy) that polar bears are thriving and not threatened by climate change.

[Discussion of the expanded communication strategy removed. ]

Heartland is planning a major boost in its fundraising efforts in 2012. But the document also shows the recent and projected donations of donors big and small.

Table 4 on p. 9 lists some fundraising events planned for 2012, including a lunch with John Stossel and an “Emerging Issues Forum” targeting state legislators that will piggyback on this year’s National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) meeting in Chicago. Heartland will even pay travel and hotel expenses for 70 legislators to attend the Forum.

But the document focuses on the prospects for tapping existing and new donors. By far the biggest donor is the revered “anonymous donor” who gave  a disappointing $979,000 in 2011 after giving more than $12 million over 2007-2010. Heartland is hoping to up that to $1.25 million this year. That donor appears to have helped Heartland “ramp up” and was apparently a strong supporter of Heartland’s global warming conferences. No doubt, the identity of this deep-pocketed backer will give rise to much speculation.

The extensive list of existing donors to be targeted include (with previous donation year and amount in parentheses):

  • Allied World Assurance Company Holdings (2011: $40,000)
  • Altria Client Services, Inc. [Philip Morris parent] (2011: $50,000)
  • AT&T for IT&T News (2010: $70,000)
  • Charles Koch Foundation (2011: $25,000)
  • Credit Union National Association (2011: $30,000) [not to be confused with the National Credit Union Association]
  • Eli Lilly & Company (2010: $25,000)
  • General Motors Foundation (2011: $15,000)
  • Microsoft Corporation (2010: $0, 2011: $60,908)
  • Nucor [Steel production & recycling] (2010: $400,000)
  • Reynolds American Inc. (2011: $110,000)

The lists even name the main project of interest for each donor (although the acronyms are not evident at present). [These acronyms have been decoded below, and correspond mostly to various Heartland serial publications, along with some projects.]

2012 Heartland Budget

Heartland is projecting a boost in revenues from $4.6 million in 2011, to $7.7 million in 2012. That will enable an operating budget of $6.5 million, as well as topping up the fund balance a further $1.2 million. The new emphasis on fundraising is reflected in the more than doubling of that item from $338K in 2011 to $800K in 2012. Management and administration take $478K while”government relations” will have an eye-opening $539,158 (up from $$423.319 in 2011).

That last number especially will make it hard for Heartland to evade charges of carrying on in effect lobbying activities.

Updates/links to come.

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377 responses to “Heartland Institute budget and strategy revealed

  1. Pingback: Leaked Documents Unmask Heart of Climate Denial Machine | Scotland's Renewable Energy Blog

  2. Skeptical Science has usefully dubbed it “Denialgate.” I think that’s apt.

  3. I don’t remember if Watts has ever admitted getting money from Heartland or its ilk; although so far, he might be able to claim that he hasn’t yet.

    We should make sure “Ethical Oil” and Vivian Krause know about Canadians Madhav Khandekar and Mitch Taylor receiving foreign funding…

  4. Could that big anonymous donor possibly be the Harper government? After all, the money they are cutting from Environment Canada has to go somewhere.

  5. I trust that you’ve seen US$88000/year to Anthony Watts’s companies:

    Surface Stations Project Payments to ItWorks/IntelliWeather to create web site featuring data from NOAA’s new network of surface stations. First payment of $44,000 in January, second of same amount contingent on fundraising around mid-year.

    • “Heartland has agreed to help Anthony raise $88,000 for the project in 2011.”
      Now I see that, on page 20 of the 2012 fundraising plan, but why is it talking about raising money for him in 2011? Maybe a typo for 2012, or a leftover from an earlier draft, or about rewarding him for his efforts in 2011…

    • Not bad pay for an incompetent hack who is barely worth entry-level WalMart wages…

    • Not bad at all, and I’ll bet he makes more than you.

    • Well, it shows that if you sell your soul to the devil he will pay you dearly for that. Even when you’re an incompentent hack like dear Anthony.

  6. The really big donor would most likely be Barre Seid from Chicago.

    See for instance : http://www.dailykos.com/story/2010/11/18/921508/-Barre-Seids-Obsession

    • It might be, however I was not able to prove that.
      Do check the B&B Seid line in FIgure H.1.5 of “Fake science…”

  7. Pingback: How is Joe Bast Like Joe Camel? Looks Like We’re Going to Find Out….. « Climate Denial Crock of the Week

  8. Patrick Moffitt

    So basically- the Heartland Institute is undoing the $500M spent last year by Greenpeace, NRDC and Sierra Club and the additional billions spent by world governments with a budget of $6M.
    Think of the disruption they could have caused with the $26 million the Sierra Club took from the gas industry.

    • Exactly, and it demonstrates how weak climate alarmism truly is when so much was accomplished by the Heartlanders with so little money.

      These documents show that all of the alarmist claims about the so-called ‘well funded denier machine’ were just made up. Lol!

      What else is new for alarmists?

      [DC: Last warning. Thanks!]

    • Interestingly though, you can go to the Greenpeace website and see exactly how they spend their money. You don’t have to wait for someone to hack into their system.

    • Yes, transparency of spending (and funding sources) is a real issue. I’ll be comparing Fraser Institute transparency to Pembina Institute. Night and day.

    • klem, telling people what they want to hear isn’t a Herculean task. Imagine if Heartland was actually trying to defend a science-based theory of climate. All they’re doing right now is trumpeting a set of baseless attacks on the overwhelmingly dominant theory, and they’re trumpeting it to people who have millions of reasons to repeat the garbage. They leverage the inexperience, lack of critical thinking skill, and paranoia of their listeners, sitting back to watch as it resonates across the beliefs and popular institutions of the political mass. Their opponents–scientists–have to use the science to explain their position. The average attention span for science is pretty short, and understanding the dynamics of climate takes serious critical skill and a long attention span. The rhetorical advantage for Heartland is, therefore, tremendous, yet they have still failed to convince a majority. And those whom they have convinced are simply parroting their theory-less attacks. If I had the lack of integrity necessary, I could probably equal Heartland’s damage for a mere $50,000.

    • “And those whom they have convinced are simply parroting their theory-less attacks.”

      And the echo chamber has some components that don’t even enter these sorts of spending talking points.

      What value does one put on the endless spin (and science avoidance) coming from FoxNews or the Wall Street Journal? The owners/controllers of these and similar media outlets are in effect spending millions on anti-AGW propaganda.

      And then there’s the Supreme Court mandate open season on funding politicians who are virulently anti-science and anti-regulation. Wonder why the Koch brothers support for Heartland went down? They’ve discovered that the Tea Party and SuperPACs are an even more effective message buy as it were.

  9. Pingback: What I’m Reading Tuesday, February 14, 2012 | Rationally Thinking Out Loud

  10. Patrick,
    Give it a rest. Oil companies spend more on lobbying per year than than the entire budget of Greenpeace etc… I think your lack of moral indignance just shows your bias… if this were climate scientists however… lord forbid…

  11. This is interesting. I wonder what it will all mean when these dastardly deniers end up being right.


  12. We have also pledged to help raise around $90,000 in 2012 for Anthony Watts to help him create a new website to track temperature station data.

    Here’s hoping that the bad publicity gives the Heartland scoundrels cold enough feet to pull the plug on Watts’ funding.

  13. Pingback: Breaking news: Denialgate – Internal Heartland documents expose climate denial funding network | SeaMonster

  14. Watts’ funding? Let him do his pointless project.

    Presumably the outcome will be yet another –
    Oh I thought it would turn out one way. Now I’ll have to smile bravely and claim it’s marvelous-science-but-we-need-more-data _or_ I now disown forever that horrible researcher who’s been seduced by the evil glamour of warmism.

  15. We have also pledged to help raise around $90,000 in 2012 for Anthony Watts to help him create a new website to track temperature station data.

    Because the last one resulted in published scientific papers that unequivocally demonstrated…oh, wait.

    (I guess they want to try the same thing again and hope they get a different result.)

    • Watts project was good enough for three years of ongoing doubt and one still available malicious report claiming the surface station record is unreliable.

      Three years of obfuscation for a mere 90,000 dollar? Bargain…

    • Nah, it’ll just be the usual parade of alleged horribles, this time without any papers produced.

    • As Albert Einstein apparently said:

      Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

  16. Patrick Moffitt

    Robert,
    You claim that “oil lobbying spends more every year than the entire budget of Greenpeace etc.” Any source for this claim which seems to be at odds with Open Secrets Org and Expose Exxon.

  17. The name of Zack Christenson in the budget document struck me immediately. It’s no particular secret, but he was formerly a producer for Milt Rosenberg’s increasingly crank-magnetism-influenced “Extension 720″ on (50 kW) WGN-AM in Chicago, which has gone so far as to give Monckton a two-hour soapbox. One just might wonder who all’s sporting sucker marks in this media market.

  18. It might be worth following the Guardian’s Leo Hickman’s tweets.

    http://twitter.com/#!/leohickman

    “Leaked Heartland Institute budget states Anthony Watts’s company received $44k in January”

    • Eh? Doesn’t Watts claim that he does WWWT only for the love of it?

      Might be time to archive some of his protestations that he isn’t paid for it, before they evaporate.

    • Watts is not a very good compensation negotiator. Craig Idso landed himself $140k a year from this ONE think tank gig. Anthony got $44k for one project that has expenses attached.

  19. …..Here’s hoping that the bad publicity……

    What bad publicity?

  20. Leo Hickman finds Heartland were paid more than $8.6 million 2007-2011 by a single anonymous donor to specifically attack AGW.

    I wonder if Henry Waxman’s going through these documents.

  21. “dissuading teachers from teaching science”

    That’s a “hide the decline” moment, right there.

    • Dave, your quote is more like a ‘hide the context” moment. The sentence is:

      His effort will focus on providing curriculum that shows that the topic of climate change is controversial and uncertain – two key points that are effective at dissuading teachers from teaching science

    • I’ve added more of the pull-quote to clarify that we are speaking here of an alternative curriculum, that will actually teach that climate science is “uncertain and controversial”. Also note that the full quote (and more) is given in the body of the piece *and* there is a link to the actual document. But adding more of the quote clarifies that this is designed to be an alternative curriculum. By the way, that effort sounds similar to that of the Fraser Institute a couple of years back, so I’ve added a link to that, in case folks are interested in seeing what an actual “alternative curriculum” might look like.

      The old passage read:
      Heartland’s “climate strategy” also includes a new anti-science climate education program designed to convince teachers that the science of climate change is both “controversial and uncertain”, two points said to be “effective at dissuading teachers from teaching science”.

      I don’t think Dave H’s comment is out of context in a comment thread. If someone were to pull that quote out of context in a separate blog post, it might be. But just as much as because the full context really points to an anti-science propaganda effort in the classroom, if previous such initiatives are anything to go by.

    • @Harold

      It seems that the provenance of the document that quote is from is in doubt, so it is not a valid point right now.

      However, I do find it amusing that you miss my intentional irony. “Hide the decline” was *itself* a “hide the context” moment. Except in this case the full context is indeed referring to pushing a specific agenda into the classroom, as corroborated by the other documents.

    • Yes, the word “dissuade” is in the disputed document, so I have removed that reference.

      But it is clear the Wojick project attacks by climate science by teaching the “controversy”, while distorting or avoiding the actual science.

      The talking point quotes, presumably from Wojick’s proposal show this clearly, especially this one, describing a module on air pollution:

      … air pollution (“whether CO2 is a pollutant is controversial. It is the global food supply and natural emissions are 20 times higher than human emissions”)

      And, yes indeed, “hide the decline” itself was all about “hide the context”.

      http://deepclimate.org/2009/12/11/mcintyre-provides-fodder-for-skeptics/

      http://deepclimate.org/2010/05/14/how-to-be-a-climate-science-auditor-part-2-the-forgotten-climategate-emails/

  22. The lists even name the main project of interest for each donor (although the acronyms are not evident at present).

    Sure they are:

    BTN: Budget and Tax News
    ECN: Environment and Climate News
    FIRE: Financial, Industry and Real Estate
    GO: General Operating
    HCN: HealthCare News
    ITTN: InfoTech and Telecom News
    LEGAL: not actually an acronym
    SRN: School Reform News

    Let me know if I missed any.

  23. Pingback: Leaked documents expose multi-million dollar climate disinformation campaign | Left Foot Forward

  24. Which docs ref MK and M. Taylor; I’ve looked through for CanCon and didn’t notice their names.

  25. If these documents are the real deal, I don’t see how Heartland can be viewed as operating in any way other than a lobbying firm, hiring out and tailoring its messages to the highest “sponsors”.

    • As if any further proof is needed? Again, here’s page 7 of their 2010 prospectus:

      http://ijish.livejournal.com/29235.html

      — frank

    • Well they’re not the real deal, that’s why the name has now morphed from DenierGate to FakeGate. And the mainstream media has reported nothing about it anyway. Lol!

      Climate alarmism is dead.

      cheers.

    • In fact only one document is disputed, and the rest are certainly the “real deal” and the contents have been corroborated by a number of the principals, including Wojick’s anti-science propaganda curriculum project, and various donors and amounts. Heartland just can’t bring themselves to admit it.

      The mainstream media is just starting. See comments above about AP and LA Times. I’m not sure “denialgate” will stick, but “fakegate” is just the usual suspects like Watts and Delingpole.

  26. Watts has responded over at (curiously) Andrew Montford’s.

    Leo Hickman gives us a reminder of something Watts once said…

    “AGW proponents seem hell bent on trying to repeat this ‘linked to’ nonsense at any cost,” he wrote last May. “Heh, I’ve yet to see that check or any from Exxon-Mobil or any other energy or development company. Somebody must be stealing checks out of my mailbox. /sarc – Anthony.”

    Yeah, ‘sarc’.

    • This is critically important. Deniers are already trying to suggest these are fake (see Morano’s site). That will become the talking point very soon.

      If Anthony confirms that he is indeed working with Heartland, i.e., “Heartland simply helped me find a donor for funding a special project…” then it’s either a remarkable coincidence that the forgers put Watts’ name on the documents or that, indeed, these documents are genuine. At a minimum, the author of the documents has inside information (in which case: why make stuff up?). Having access to the dollar amount of the project and Anthony not contradicting it is enough for me to believe these are real. Of course, maybe someone has access to Anthony’s info? Stay tuned …

    • “If Anthony confirms that he is indeed working with Heartland”

      He has. Carter, too.

    • Morano still has:

      ALERT: Key Heartland document touted by warmists is a FORGERY?! Developing…
      Wednesday, February 15, 2012By Marc Morano – Climate Depot

      Stay tuned…Developing…

      Google crawled this over an hour ago, so this may be “developing” for a while. (He doesn’t seem too sure of himself?!)

      If I had to guess, I’d say Morano is focusing on the Climate Strategy document, which was scanned in contrast to the PDFs created by “jbast”. But that probably means that “Heartland Insider” only had a hard copy of this document. However for the most part the material in it seems corroborated by the more formal (and presumably later) documents.

    • Carter admits getting Heartland money, too, in the Oz press.

      The documents are clearly authentic.

    • No, Anthony… Those Exxon-Mobile checks are laundered through the think tanks that give you money.

  27. #denialgate at Twitter.

  28. Pingback: Fischio » Ocasapiens - Blog - Repubblica.it

  29. I found this interesting:

    ” Heartland plays an important role in climate communications, especially through our in-house experts (e.g., Taylor) through his Forbes blog and related high profile outlets, our conferences, and through coordination with external networks (such as WUWT and other groups capable of rapidly mobilizing responses to new scientific findings, news stories, or unfavorable blog posts).”

    Looks like the “echo chamber” is built, designed, and maintained in part by Heartland.

  30. That’s what happens with evolution. Teachers are afraid to teach the subject because creationists have fabricated a false “controversy”. It’s simply easier to drop the topic altogether, or at best touch on it superficially and hope nobody makes a stink. The Heartland Institute is trying to do the same thing with climate science. The less science taught the better for their purposes.

  31. Pingback: Shawn Lawrence Otto: Climate Denial Bombshell | Screw Cable

  32. Pingback: The meaning of HeartlandGate : Greg Laden's Blog

  33. I know what you mean, I was lead to believe the denier side was much better funded than that. It’s truly amazing that climate skepticism has gotten so far with so little money.

    I hope more of these documents are released, it will kill the alarmists.

    Cheers

    • Heartland is just one of dozens of organizations doing this. Not to mention the millions being funneled to U.S. politicians who oppose regulation of fossil fuel industry.

    • klem, have you figured out the difference between using money for doing research, and using money for pumping out PR?

      — frank

    • klem… Heartland is just one think tank doing this work. Try multiplying their figures by 20 or so to get an estimate on what’s being spent on the climate denial campaign.

    • Many other anti-science organizations have much bigger budgets, such as AEI.

      And then one must consider that these organizations have ready made media platforms to amplify the message and bring it to a very wide audience – for example Fox News.

      However, things might become even worse. Since the SCOTUS has effectively removed campaign spending limits, we should expect ever higher amounts supporting fossil-fuel friendly politicians.

    • Klem.

      Pick up a handful of mud and throw it, and see how much sticks.

      Now pick up a handful of clean and throw it at the previously hurled mud, and see how much that reverses your initial effort.

      Which action gave you the best bang for your buck?

      [DC: “clean” -> “cleaner”?]

    • [DC: “clean” -> “cleaner”?]

      No, I did actually mean “clean”!

      As with ‘truth’, it’s an abstract concept, yet one easily besmirched by tangible dirt.

      So on the one hand it’s simple to bring the credibility of something down with the mere dirt of lies, misunderstandings and misrepresentations, and it’s just as difficult to restore that credibility when doing so requires a knowledge of complicated-to-understand, difficult-to-decribe facts.

      Perhaps another way of analogising the relative cost of propaganda versus non-baisc education would be to ask Klem whether it’s easier to scramble an egg, or to unscramble it…

      Science is about unscrambling knowledge, whilst corporate propaganda of the sort peddled by Heartland is alll about (re)scrambling it as quickly as possible, and with as high a denaturing heat as possible.

  34. [DC: Repetition – you made that point already. Read the comment policy. Thanks!]

  35. Pingback: Red Alert: Leaked documents reveal the corporate funders behind far reaching climate denier campaign : Tree Alerts

  36. Yesterday was crazy (jury duty in middle of chaos), but I am now catching up.
    Here are a few items from the Heartland leak, with sections from Fakery, which was scheduled to be published today or tomorrow … when this giant bluebird leak appeared out of nowhere.
    (In sales terms, this is sometimes called a bluebird: you are struggling to make the quarter’s revenue numbers, and somebody you’ve never heard of calls and asks to buy $10M worth of computers if they can get them before end of quarter.)

    Anyway, this takes Heartland documents and adds context from Fakery pages.

    Fundraising plan:
    p.7 “Charles Koch…network of philanthropists they work with”
    Fakery:Appendix I: that’s Philanthropy Roundatable.

    “We plan to identify and re-introduce ourselves to the top 20 foundations…”
    Fakery: FIgure H.1.4, H.1.5, pp.57-59: some donors had dropped off, Heartland was increasingly dependent on the one big donor (who was hidden behind DONORS TRUST)

    p.8 “We have … that complements our Prospectus…”
    Fakery: App. G.5. Prospectus? DO they want to IPO? :-)
    Fakery has annotated extracts.

    p.8 Donor events … for “donors … or for elected officials”
    Fakery: Z.2008.08-12
    Elected officials will spend all day with “policy analysts” and
    “government affairs professionals.” Might any be lobbyists? IRS-5L
     Elected officials get a nice dinner, where donors normally buy tables.
    Presumably seating arrangements do not isolate the officials together.
     Legislators who have joined Heartland’s Legislative Forum get money.

    p.13 NIPCC
    “NIPCC iscurrently funded by two gifts a year from two foundations, both of them requesting anonymity.”
    Fakery: p.57 the red items are climate specific and some of the purple goes there also.
    There are 2 gifts under DONORS CAPITAL for “global warming research projects”. Sadly, 2010 DONORS 990 isn’t out yet.

    ANGRY BADGER: well, that was a new one on me … but I do suspect there will indeed be some angry badgers around.

    p.18 Wojick and K-12
    Fakery: FIg W.4.1, p.86 has a chronology of different article groups through the 86 issues of Environment and Climate News I had.
    See section called PARENTS. AIT’s Nobel stirred them up in 2007, so this K-12 thing is nothing new.
    See especially

    Z.2007.10-3 James M. Taylor
    Alaska Teachers Indoctrinated with Misleading Global Warming
    Materials

    Z.2008.04-19 –Heartland quarter-page ad
    IS YOUR CHILD BEING EDUCATED OR INDOCTRINATED?
    (Picture of nice girl … apparently not strong enough, so…)

    Z.2008.05- 13 Heartland quarter-page advertisement
    Is Your Child Being Educated or Indoctrinated?
    (girl replaced by Al Gore … that ad ran often)
    Z.2010.08-9a, p.190. Global Warming Sham Shirts!

    p.20-21 Anonymous donor Table 5.
    Years 3007-2009 overlap with those columns of Fakery FIgures H.1.4 and H.1.5.
    Heartland: $3.2M, $4.6M, $2.8M.
    Fakery *H.1.4 for DONORS (C+T)$$3.0M, $4.6M, $2.7M
    Close enough.

    pp.22- Gifts by renewing donors
    (Most of the family foundations smaller donations from 990s are in a spreadsheet I didn’t publish, to focus on the major funding. I may update that and post it.
    Altria $50K: AHA! still taking tobacco money.
    GM Foundation: hmm, do we recall bailout?
    Murray Energy: largest private coal company
    Reynolds American: $110K … well, they still like Bast for his defense of Joe Camel.
    Fakery: p.45 “Joe Camel is Innocent!” See also TwistaLime.

  37. Note this important update (also at top of the post).

    [Update Feb. 15. John Mashey has released a very timely report on Heartland and SEPP, Fake science, fakexperts, funny finances, free of tax, at Desmogblog (PDF 5Mb) with summaries from Richard Littlemore, and Mashey himself.]

  38. Steven Sullivan

    klem, when your *goal* is to direct policy, and your *connections* to politicians and media are at this level, and your *donors* have such deep pockets, and the levers of power are so very un-transparent, then yes, it doesn’t take much to ‘get so far’. All they have do , after all, is sow doubt. They don’t have to do any science.

  39. I see Desmog’s gone offline.

  40. Just goes to show…..it costs less money to sell the truth than it does to sell the AGW lie.

    • I see – climate science is all a massive conspiracy and an “AGW lie”. Thanks for clearing up exactly where Heartland and their ilk are coming from.

      I think we’ll stick with the actual scientific evidence, which is overwhelmingly against your position.

    • Gavin's Pussycat

      Yep, wrecking is ridiculously easy, and cheap… for a change it’s the liars getting wrecked. Savour the moment.

  41. Note that “Credit Union National Association” that funds Heartland
    is not
    the “National Credit Union Association”

  42. Pingback: Breaking news: A look behind the curtain of the Heartland Institute’s climate change spin | Space Travels - Space Turism

  43. Pingback: Latest Leaked Climate Documents Scandal

  44. Pingback: The Climate Change Debate Thread - Page 1148

  45. Pingback: Climate change deniers aim to scare teachers off science | cartesian product

  46. DC,

    “If I had to guess, I’d say Morano is focusing on the Climate Strategy document, which was scanned in contrast to the PDFs created by “jbast”.”

    A long shot but,
    jbast = joe bastardi?

  47. Pingback: Some notes on the Heartland Leak | Wott's Up With That?

  48. Skepticism is the engine of true science. Without it there would only be ‘trust’ that the claims being made were not politically motivated or the result of misinterpreted or poorly obtained data, etc. For example , without skepticism in science, we would have anthropology texts including the consensus that accepted Piltdown man.

    ‘You people’ started insisting that human CO2 is causing or will cause catastrophic global warming over 20 years ago. But there is still no correlation that even ALL CO2 makes any measurable difference to global temperature and that truth can ONLY result in honest skepticism. The debate is not over, you simply refuse to allow one to begin. And the more you refuse, the more people like me suspect that you are riding a purely political horse not a scientific one.

    The globe is the same temperature it was 15 years ago

    • There is no plausible alternative explanation, other than anthropgenic (chiefly GHGs), for the warming of the last 30-40 years. In fact solar irradiation has gone down over that time. True skeptics recognize that fact.

      “The globe is the same temperature it was 15 years ago”

      That is incorrect, as has been explained many times. Each succeeding decade has been warmer than the one before for some time now. It is only by focusing on overly short time periods or comparing cherry-picked points that you can be fooled into thinking otherwise.

      Please avoid previously debunked contrarian talking points in future. Thanks!

    • If you will forgive me for linking to a bad article by Peter Foster which repeats the “stalled for 15 years” claim, commenter Cytotoxic came up with this ingenious though wrong explanation:

      (Quoting another commenter:)
      “If global warming stopped 15 years ago, how come 9 of the 10 hottest years on record have occurred since the year 2000?”

      Okay LB, pay close attention: It got warm, and stayed warm, but did not get warmer. Hence that period of flat warmth was higher than before and hence the warm years you just mentioned. You cannot be this simple oh wait yes you can

      http://opinion.financialpost.com/2012/02/10/peter-foster-political-science-at-the-academies/#comment-436900559

    • “the more you refuse, the more people like me suspect that you are riding a purely political horse not a scientific one.”

      Exactly correct. That’s why the public does not care about climate alarmism anymore as Copenhagen, Cancun and Durban have demonstrated.

      cheers

    • I guess you missed the part where Mike M’s points were ripped to shreds (see below). But then again it is you and Mike M who are purely political, and out of touch with science. I’ve been patient with you, but I think I’ve had enough now. Thanks!

  49. The document that Heartland claims to be a fake does stick out like a sore thumb. It is obviously a scanned printout as opposed to a document generated by a word publishing product,

    The metatags on said document show it was created on the 13th of Feb on an Epson device. It would be very interesting to discover when the social engineering that resulted in this leak occurred – no other document in there is quite as ‘fresh’.

  50. Modeling doesn’t qualify as evidence, and certainly not when it continuously fails to correspond with observed data. But nice try.

  51. The Heartland Institute’s 990 for 2010 as published on Guidestar affirms that no single donor gave over 5% of the total revenues… hope the IRS is taking a look at the 990 in the light of these documents, if they hold up…

  52. Heartland’s press release says:

    The stolen documents were obtained by an unknown person who fraudulently assumed the identity of a Heartland board member and persuaded a staff member here to “re-send” board materials to a new email address. Identity theft and computer fraud are criminal offenses subject to imprisonment. We intend to find this person and see him or her put in prison for these crimes.

    Huh. If only they had expressed that much outrage over the “Climategate” hacking.

  53. DC: “There is no plausible alternative explanation..”

    Natural variability is indeed a very plausible ‘alternative’ explanation because everything we see happening with climate now has happened before without the ‘extra’ 3% CO2 from human activity.
    ….
    DC: That is incorrect, as has been explained many times.
    It is NOT incorrect! I linked the HADCRUT v3 adjusted global chart and we are at the same temperature we were at 15 years ago – TRUE OR FALSE?

    Are you going to try to convince me that the ~0.7 C degrees of global temperature change, both up and down, that has occurred over that period was due to natural variability but that a 1 degree amount of increase over the next hundred years, well .. that can only be due to human GHG’s?

    Don’t even try…

  54. Gotta love the commentary on WUWT.
    This was just in response to someone saying that an anonymous millionaire funding denial is a big deal.

    [Reply: a well known billionaire is funding the pseudo science blog sceptical science. That billionaire is a multiple convicted felon who worked willingly for the Nazis in WWII. How is that not headline news? -mod]

    • That’s Godwin’s Law. Everyone have a drink.

    • That’s right – triggered, as usual, by a denialist, in this case a WUWT moderator. Guess he learned from Christopher “Godwin’s Law” Monckton himself. Hey, your non-sequiturs and own goals have been fun, but it’s really time for you to go now. Thanks!

  55. Although it may not be directly provable, the following properties are strongly suggestive of Barre Seid:
    – Geneal eagerness to donate gigantic piles of money for right-wing pseudoscience
    – Specific association with Joe Bast. (Apart from being a known recipient of Seid Foundation largesse in the past, Bast was one of Seid’s chosen goons in the attempted takeover of Shimer College — Chicago’s stubbornly and still very much independent Great Books college — in 2009-2010)
    – A fetish for anonymity in general, even when donating to organizations that are already known recipients of Seid Foundation grants. At Shimer, too, Seid was known as the “Anonymous Donor” (with caps).
    – Specific preference for using Donors Capital/Donors Trust to hide his identity

    No smoking gun, but definitely a lot of smoke…

  56. Ahhh, Snorey thank you. That is more data. 3 of the 54 are attributes shared by others, and B&B Seid has been on the interesting list for many months. See p.62 of Fakery.

    Figure H.3.1-1 showed a sudden batch of grants from Heartland to places of which I knew some, but not others, Including Shimer. Take a look at see what you thin of my conjectures.

    Then Figure H.3.1-2 has another batch, 2007-2010. The first 3 years look like foreign climate efforts, but the alst 3 again, are to 3 other thinktanks.
    All this looks like hiding the donor, or perhaps splitting moeny to get by the 33% rule.

  57. Susan Anderson

    One more possible anonymous donor: The Anschutz Entertainment Group (Philip Anschutz and Tim Leiweke). The New Yorker produced an article in the January 16th issue, behind a paywall: Connie Bruck, “The Man Who Owns L.A.”. The available abstract doesn’t mention the similarity of interests with the Koch Brothers; the money is certainly there. They’ve worked with environmental groups, but only to get away with bypassing regulations and getting funding from public sources.

  58. “Microsoft Corporation (2010: $0, 2011: $60,908)|”

    Looks like that was a donation of software “to the value of” which they do for nonprofits right across the spectrum.

  59. Pingback: The real Climategate: Heartland’s hypocrisy on display

  60. Pingback: Heartland Institute: Hey Kids, Have a Smoke and Denial « Global Warming: Man or Myth?

    • i wonder how long it will take for Heartland to claim that this email was “stolen”. But that won’t fly. After all, it was presumably an email blast released by one of many recipients. There is no reasonable expectation of confidentiality in that context.

    • The Mother Jones headline is priceless.

      Internal Heartland Institute Email Blasts “Lamestream Media” for Climate Leak

      Apparently that term was popularized by Sarah Palin.

    • LSM – Nope – I am the person who first used the term “Lame Stream Media”. .. really! Sarah and Rush stole it from me.

      [DC: Regarding the URL – FTFY ]

    • And there’s another fake.

    • OK – I’ll let you have one last own goal. That fundraising email was confirmed as authentic by Heartland. Oh well, nice try. Thanks!

  61. Pingback: #DenialGate – Get it All Here « Climate Denial Crock of the Week

  62. I’m seeing elsewhere that the scanned strategy document was scanned and created using the same PDF version and has the same meta-data as the 990 Form that’s actually on Heartland’s website. Anyone seen this anywhere else?

  63. to quote Heartland:

    “But honest disagreement should never be used to justify [the] criminal acts and fraud…”

    Blew the fuse on my irony meter.

    Are they saying that dishonest disagreement could actually justify criminal acts such as the UEA email theft?

  64. I urge people to read 0.4 in Fakery about 501(c)(3) rules. Read the whole thing; for CA, IRS-10F ire relevant …
    but “honest disagreement” comes under IRS-0E (esp 1E and 2E.
    For IRS-3E, see p.84 for negative words ijn 86 issues of E&CN.
    For example, alarmist/alarmism appears 880 times, not even counting some of the images. That seems to be the “on message” term, as tehre are only 4 “warmist.”

    I claim that 501(c)(3) is actually the key item in this whole mess, because there are things one can do as a private individual that one cannot do, especially pervasively, for a 501(c)(3).

    • Aren’t there limits to how much can come from a single donor? How much do we know about DONORS CAPITAL beyond Heartland?

    • It’s more complicated than that. Very roughly:
      1) Take 2% of the total donations.
      2) For each donor, take the max(donation, 2%).
      3) Add those up.
      If the total is 33 1/3% or more, public participation is OK.
      So, one could have 18 donors: 16 x 2% and 1 X 66%, of which 2% would count.
      Of course, if one were near the edge, one migh split the 66% into 3 x 22%, so that would count as 3×2%.
      See Fakery, 0.l4, IRS-8P tag.

    • Yes that is the same one. But I’m not going to get into others’ arguments about climate science here.

      If you (or anyone else) have a comment about Mashey’s research into Heartland and SEPP, fair enough. Thanks!

  65. There are a lot of suspicious things about the “2012 Climate Strategy.pdf” document that Heartland says is fake (the one that all the shocking quotes come from):

    1. It uses the term “anti-climate” to refer to Heartland’s position — which neither Heartland nor any other climate skeptic outfit ever uses.

    2. It is written in the 1st person, yet with no indication of who wrote it.

    3. The PDF is time-stamped with a Pacific Standard Time timestamp, even though Heartland is in Chicago, and none of its directors are in the Pacific Time Zone, nor even in a State adjacent to the Pacific Time Zone.

    It appears likely that, as Heartland claims, the document really is a fake, and a clumsy one, at that.

    • The IRS form, which is also a scanned PDF, has many differences in the metadata XML. The dates are from Aug 2011 and the time zone is -5. -5 is Eastern Standard / Central Daylight time, which matches with Chicago in the summer.

      The Climate Strategy doc has very fresh dates (Feb 13, 2012) and given the time of year the time zone of -8 shows Pacific Standard time.

      The IRS form has no Producer metadata, the Climate Strategy doc says the Producer is Epson, indicating it was scanned on an Epson device.

      If it is a fake doc then one is stuck wondering “why fake it?” There is a fair amount of damning material without the Strategy doc, certainly more than enough to take notice of.

      Is it some sort of false flag? Was it just for the lulz? Maybe some sort of well-meaning but ultimately dumb attempt to drive the point home?

  66. Does anyone have an idea what the $88K Watts website project is all about? I gather it’s about displaying min/max/record station data already available from NOAA. But I cannot fathom the point of that. What propaganda angle does that have (I know it doesn’t have any scientific value)? If I were a donor I would be quite concerned that money was being misspent. Why are they shelling out $88K for this? Isn’t that a bit too much for such a project anyway?

    But then I was also surprised how much they spend on the NIPCC report and consider that a waste from a propaganda point of view too (and what else is it for?). It’s really preaching to a choir that would just as happy with a much cheaper report.

  67. Did you or anyone on your staff, or at DeSmog Blog or John Mashey, create, alter, change or format the strategy document in question?

    • Good grief. Even Heartland has not suggested that, according to the new fundraising email to donors released by Mother Jones.

      Someone stole the identity of a Heartland board member and persuaded a staff member here to “re-send” board materials to a new email address. That same unknown person forged a “strategy” memo that seriously misrepresents our goals and tactics and added it to the stolen documents, then sent them to many of the bloggers and hate groups that occupy the blogosphere. [Emphasis added]

      Of course I didn’t have anything to do with the strategy document, except link to it at the DesmogBlog archive (and then remove the link because of its questionable authenticity)! And I have no “staff” by the way. Obviously I can’t speak authoritatively for DesmogBlog, but frankly the suggestion is ludicrous. Even more so, if that is possible, in John Mashey’s case.

      By the way, besides the archive at DesmogBlog, there is at least one other archive of the Heartland documents, at ThinkProgress. It’s slightly different in that it contains the minutes from the January 17 meeting and omits the IRS 990 form. Why the differences? I have no idea, but I understand that same version of the 990 may already be available at Heartland.

    • 1) I already had a copy of the Heartland 2010 (from Guidestar), used those numbers in Fakery. That’s publicly available, so I don’t know why they bothered to send it, maybe just forwarded the Board package.
      2) I have no idea why anybody omitted anything, but as I recall, Tuesday was pretty crazy. I was in jury-call room most of the afternoon.

      I’ve consulted my staff, all 4 CPU cores and 6 displays, and they all swear they didn’t meddle with any files, as if they could have.
      I think I recall that ThinkProgress actually posted it first. (?)

    • Yes I think that’s right, because when I was googling this on Tuesday I think ThinkProgress was an hour or two ahead of DesmogBlog.

    • Wait a minute, wait a minute… I’m spotting something really weird. The PDFs in the DeSmogBlog and ThinkProgress versions are actually quite different at the ones-and-zeros level.

      Yes, that includes the “2012 Climate Strategy.pdf” document.

      Time to do a detailed comparison…

      — frank

    • Good to get that on record, don’t you think?

    • “Get that on the record”: You mean the fact that these are wild accusations with no basis in fact or logic? Sure, why not have that on the record.

    • As far as the differences in the PDFs, the meta data would have changed along the way and it looks like some files were renamed too (since the names don’t match). Perhaps in some cases the files were read and resaved.

      But I very much doubt that the files themselves were changed. But, hey, go for it if you think otherwise.

    • Deep Climate:

      I did a quick “diff” over the PDF contents converted to HTML, and yes, the contents (i.e. the wording) in the two versions are identical. Even the OCR misspellings in “2012 Climate Strategy” are exactly the same.

      This may explain the Associated Press‘s claim that only “six” documents were sent out. Perhaps different people were getting different subsets of the same document pile?

      — frank

  68. I tried to question Watts over on WUWT with regard to that statement he made last year :

    “Heh, I’ve yet to see that check or any from Exxon-Mobil or any other energy or development company. Somebody must be stealing checks out of my mailbox. /sarc – Anthony.”

    I tried to discover whether he knew the Heartland money was coming to him at that stage; whether he was in the processing of searching for money from such organisations at that time; and why he had limited his decription to oil, energy and development companies, i.e. could he add in Heartland and similar organisations into that quote and still claim it as being true.

    First attempt was censored. Second attempt disappeared.
    What’s up with that indeed !

  69. Pingback: Leaked Documents From Climate Denialism Lobbyists Revealed | Care2 Causes

  70. There is starting to be some media attention in the U.S.

    Here is a report from Neela Banerjee of the LA Times.

    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/environment/la-me-gs-climate-deniers-heartland-institute-documents-leaked-20120216,0,3932985.story

    The article focuses mainly on David Wojick’s K-12 curriculum project. Wojick’s connection to the DoE was played up by Heartland, so Banjeree got a comment from them.

    Wojick has been “a part-time support contractor for the Office of Scientific and Technical Information since 2003, working to help the office manage and organize its electronic databases. He has never advised or conducted research for the Department on climate change or any other scientific topic, and the office he works for is not a research organization,” said Jen Stutsman, a spokeswoman for the Energy Department.

    Wojick is not a scientist. His academic background, he said, is “in the logic (or philosophy) of science.”

    Heartland has also confirmed the authenticity of yesterday’s anti-“lamestream” fundraising appeal first released by Mother Jones (see above).

    The Heartland Institute has not yet responded to questions about whether any of the other documents have been altered, saying that Bast, their president, was traveling. He did find time, however, to sign a fund-raising plea that was released Thursday by Mother Jones and which the think tank confirmed was authentic.

  71. Here’s an Associated Press story by Seth Borenstein. Weirdly he discusses six documents, not eight or nine. No matter –

    http://www.canadianbusiness.com/article/71477–editor-s-note-an-occasional-look-at-how-interests-work-behind-the-scenes-to-wield-influence

    Because Heartland was not specific about what was fake and what was real, The Associated Press attempted to verify independently key parts of separate budget and fundraising documents that were leaked. The federal consultant working on the classroom curriculum, the former TV weatherman, a Chicago elected official who campaigns against hidden local debt and two corporate donors all confirmed to the AP that the sections in the document that pertained to them were accurate. No one the AP contacted said the budget or fundraising documents mentioning them were incorrect.

    And more Wojick:

    David Wojick, a federal database contractor, said in an email that the document was accurate about his project to put curriculum materials in schools that promote climate skepticism.

    “My goal is to help them teach one of the greatest scientific debates in history,” Wojick said. “This means teaching both sides of the science, more science, not less.”

    Five government and university climate scientists contacted said they were most disturbed by Wojick’s project, fearing the teaching would be more propaganda rooted in politics than peer-reviewed science.

    • I haven’t noticed Wojick’s comments particularly over at Curry’s where he seems to hang out. A couple of comments by him in the Heartland post there give me the impression he is a ‘true believer’ in the falseness of AGW.

      Is there any evidence that he has experience or training in developing educational curriculum?

    • And elsewhere he speaks of “teaching the controversy”. “teach both sides”. “teach the controversy”.

      His project is taken straight out of the creationist’s playbook as this is exactly the approach taken by those who try to force schools to teach creationism in science class.

    • Yes, there is, and it’s pretty ominous. It’s in the 2012 Fundraising document:


      Dr. Wojick has conducted extensive research on environmental and science education for the Department of Energy. In the course of this research, he has identified what subjects and concepts teachers must teach, and in what order (year by year), in order to harmonize with national test requirements. He has contacts at virtually all the national organizations involved in
      producing, certifying, and promoting science curricula.

      Basically the man knows the system and has important connections – which is why he was hired.

    • Wojick is discussing his educational plans at Curry’s; in one comment, he links to this:

      “We are experts on the grade level aspects of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) educational content. We offer services related to grade level stratification of content, based on our detailed analysis of state standards of learning.These services include consulting, research, analysis, design and training…”

      http://www.stemed.info/

      “…I will be working from my model of the concept structure of K-12 science education. (See http://www.stemed.info). Teaching time is extremely limited in science education, so it will be mostly pointing out the major controversies, as time permits, just a few hours in total at most…”

      http://judithcurry.com/2012/02/15/heartland/#comment-169983

    • Well, Curry doesn’t think they should teach climate change science, just the controversy, so…
      As she says, “With regards to K-12 education, there is no particular reason to teach ‘climate change’ in the K-12 curriculum. Climate change is a topic that is more suitable (for) high school ‘science and society’ courses. In such courses, teaching the controversy would seem to be of paramount importance. Critical thinking and understanding the complex societal factors that are influenced by science and influence science itself would be of value in such a course, although intelligent and appropriate handling of such a course at the high school level is a challenge.”

    • Egads, someone putting together a curriculum for science education sees absolutely no problem in using the invented term “CAGW”? Red flag.

  72. THis is not very importnat, but it is fun.
    Take a look at the Heartland budget document, p.25.
    They spend about $50K Printing & mailing E&CN.
    However, one item says:

    ‘Roosters of the Apocalypse polybag? Decided against this.’

    Could it be that they decided that it was environmentally conscious to skip this? I’m sad, these would have made great collector items.

    • The roosters showed up over at Stoat’s, H/T Chris Winter. I should have just Googled: roosters apocalypse … but then, I might not have learned about Ping, The Duck.

  73. Charles Koch says (and this is consistent) that they are funding healthcare. …
    From the HI funding document pp.22-, so do, among others (sum of 2010/2011):
    $25K Amgen
    $25K C.G. Koch
    $42K Dezenhall
    $25K Eli Lilly
    $50K GlaxoSmithKLine
    $290K Golden Rule Insturance
    $130K Pfizer
    $20K PhRMA
    (among others, anybody labeled HCN)

    There there is:
    FIRE:
    $90K Altria
    $110K Reynolds American

    (See Appendices F and G in http://www.desmogblog.com/fake-science-fakexperts-funny-finances-free-tax

    SO: people fund *healthcare* for Heartland, with:
    a) Long history of taking tobacco money, PM’s Roy Marden on Board
    b) Joe Bast defending Joe Camel
    c) E&CN carrying tobacco-supportive articles, ads for Smoker’s Lounge (see p.46 of Fake…)
    d) and the long-term funders saw things like fakery p.48, with Philip Morris as a Platinum Sponsor.

    The tobacco companies (and some smaller tobacco retailers) fund FIRE, i.e., keep taxes low to avoid lower cigarette sales.

    This is like cofunding a hospital emergency room … side-by-side with the mafia who put people there.

  74. Pete Dunkelberg

    Remarkably, I missed the part where Wojick disclaimed the document. If he hasn’t, then… that exact version may not be official, (just his draft) but something similar is? Or what?

    • Wojick hasn’t disclaimed the description of the project given in the Fundraising planning document, as far as I know. The project description (excerpted above in the post and comments) contains quotes which are presumably from Wojick’s proposal. He does take exception to the interpretation that most people would have of his project, but that’s to be expected.

      Or are you referring to some other document? I wasn’t aware of anything attributed to Wojick himself that could be considered a “draft”. Presumably there is a proposal kicking around Heartland, and Bast summarized that using key quotes, and added his own commentary. I wonder how many times the word “controversial” occurs in Wojick’s proposal.

  75. Heartland Institute faces fresh scrutiny over tax status
    Suzanne Goldenberg, The Guardian

    John Mashey, a retired computer scientist and Silicon Valley executive, said he filed a complaint to the IRS this week that said Heartland’s public relations and lobbying efforts violated its non-profit status.

    Mashey said he sent off his audit, the product of three months’ research, just a few hours before the unauthorised release of the Heartland documents.

    Mashey said in a telephone interview that the complaint looked at the activities of Heartland and two other organisations that have been prominent in misinforming the public about climate change, the Science and Environmental Policy Project, run by Fred Singer, and the Centre for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, run by Craig Idso. Both men were funded by Heartland, with Idso receiving $11,600 per month and Singer $5,500 a month, according to the 2012 budget.

    Heartland is also funding contrarians in Canada and other countries, the documents show.

    “I believe there was a massive abuse of 501c(3),” Mashey said. “My extensive study of these think anks showed numerous specific actions that violated the rules – such as that their work is supposed to be factually based. Such as there was a whole lot of behaviour that sure looked like lobbying and sending money to foreign organisations that are not charities.”

    The latter include two organizations associated with Tom Harris, the Natural Resources Stewardship Project and the International Climate Science Coalition.

    The article points to an open letter by climate scientists.

    IThere was also a call from a group of climate scientists who have personally been on the receiving end of attacks from Heartland and bloggers funded by the think tank, and whose email was posted online after a notorious 2009 hack, for Heartland to “recognise how its attacks on science and scientists have poisoned the debate about climate change policy,” in a letter made available exclusively to the Guardian.

  76. Just read a piece in the Huffinton post about Heartland. They reference the money Hearland is spending politicing for Walker in Wisconson.

    This of course can’t be true. Mr.Bast swears they do no politics so he can stay tax free. I believe him just as much as I believe that one document is fake.

    John McManus

    • Well I don’t think anyone can say with certainty that the two-pager in question is genuine, so I wouldn’t use that yardstick.

      On the other hand, Heartland still will not concede the accuracy and authenticity of dozens of other document pages, and continues to refer to fake documents (plural). But their credibility is undermined by many specific instances where they seem to confirm contents of the fundraising plan, for instance. Take this paragraph-by-paragraph critique of a NY Times article. The original article quoted liberally from the K-12 project description:

      “Principals and teachers are heavily biased toward the alarmist perspective,” one document said.

      And:

      The curriculum would claim, for instance, that “whether humans are changing the climate is a major scientific controversy.”

      But did Heartland claim *that* was fake? Uh, no, they defended it, thus confirming the validity of the document.

      Gotta love the comments too.

      I think it’s great and you should all take a so what attitude and be proud of the fact that at last someone is bringing debate to this issue. The sponsors should step up and double their contributions publicly to put and end to what has become the biggest scientific fraud of all time. This madness will never stop until these con artists are exposed and suffer the censure of the scientific establishment. Thank you and keep up the good work.

      Now of course the K-12 curriculum won’t explicitly say that AGW is the “the biggest scientific fraud of all time”. But that’s the clear implication Wojick’s “controversies”.

  77. DC and John,

    I find it troubling that Wojick , a federal employee (DOE), is being paid to develop materials designed misinform and confuse school children about human-caused climate change.

    Are his employer (DOE) and boss aware of what he has been up to? Surely, he would need to seek approval from the Feds to receive outside funding/income for this project?

    Has he been using federal time and/or hardware/software to produce and disseminate the misinformation?

    Aren’t his actions in direct conflict with the Federal government’s position on climate change?

    Has he declared the icome from Heartland to the IRS?

    • Well I don’t see any income from Wojick there anyway – it’s a projected payout to start later in 2012.

      Wojick is a contractor not an employee, and his work is on databases. There is a statement from the DoE in the LA Times article by Neela Banjeree.

      Wojick has been “a part-time support contractor for the Office of Scientific and Technical Information since 2003, working to help the office manage and organize its electronic databases. He has never advised or conducted research for the Department on climate change or any other scientific topic, and the office he works for is not a research organization,” said Jen Stutsman, a spokeswoman for the Energy Department.

      This is obviously a response to this paragraph of the K-12 project description (which I’ve also added to the long excerpt in the main post).

      Dr. [David] Wojick has conducted extensive research on environmental and science education for the Department of Energy. In the course of this research, he has identified what subjects and concepts teachers must teach, and in what order (year by year), in order to harmonize with national test requirements. He has contacts at virtually all the national organizations involved in producing, certifying, and promoting science curricula. [Emphasis added]

      Now I don’t know what claims Wojick himself has made about his DoE “research” or how it possibly relates to science education. But also note that Heartland is not claiming he has expertise in science education, but rather that he knows how to make a curriculum fit with the standardized requirements. Thus Heartland’s optimism that this project has “great potential for success” in finally getting their anti-science propaganda into the schools.

  78. On education:
    Check Fakery, Fig. W.4.1, the PARENTS sections.
    That will show you which issues had articles and ads.
    This is what they’d been doing since 2007, and it hadn’t gotten much traction. Do search for frosty (Z.2007.04-9) and read that article, which was already well out of date by the time Taylor printed it.

    Check the first 2 “IS your child being indoctrinated or educated?” which starts with a young girl, perhaps not effective in stirring action, so switches to Gore, same words.

    Search for Prez, getting Z.2009.08, where Heartland sent out 14,000 copies of Jo Nova’s handbook:
    ‘“The Skeptic’s Handbook is a carefully and accurately written account of
    matters to do with contemporary climate change,” Carter also wrote. “Every
    statement in it is founded in data contained in numerous research papers in
    refereed scientific journals.”’
    Every issue is linked back to the original PDF @ Heartland ,so you can see the whole article. IO really recommend picking an issue or two to peruse.
    Not too many, though…

  79. Ross Kaminski ( at the American Spectator), a senior Heartland fellow, says that a staffer sent emails on “more than one occasion”.This is a different story than is being told by other staffers.,

    He makes no mention of alterations.

    John McManus

  80. In his report, Dr. Mashey told what I found out about SPPI being nothing but a fake institute housed in a mailbox at a UPS store in a shopping center. My GPS and I were really confused, but I finally figured it out. Dr. Mashey also told how SPPI added footnotes to Dr. Happer’s Senate testimony. Some of the footnotes cited Lord Monckton.
    This report is really great! Dr. Mashey really knows how to get to the bottom of things.

  81. @ John Mashey

    Something that may or may not be of interest. Australian Senator Cory Bernardi is known for his right-wing views, is anti- same sex marriage and a climate science denier. On the 15th Feb (same day the Heartland Inst “leak” occurred), the Adelaide Advertiser (News Limited) featured an article on Bernardi’s views on the CSIRO’s “Carbon Kids” program (a national children’s scientific program part of which teaches kids the science behind climate change). The Adelaide Advertiser article is here:

    http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/climate-debate-evolves-into-school-dispute/story-e6frea83-1226271604595

    Bernardi’s attack bears remarkable similarity to Heartland’s angle on teaching climate science in schools.

    As it turns out, The Age reported back in October last year on Bernardi’s anti-carbon price activities. That Age article also details his role in several “conservative” anti-climate change groups. Relevantly, it mentions his involvement with Heartland, including
    Bernardi’s Registrar of Senators’ Interests shows that last year he travelled to the United States as a guest of the Tea Party think tank, the Heartland Institute. He denied he had talked about Tea Party tactics or organising ”grassroots” groups on the web, but said he spoke at its conference in May. In October last year he also declared the institute paid for his accommodation in Sydney during another conference

    I was just wondering if these donations/ expenses paid to Bernardi explained one or more of the amounts going to anonymous beneficiaries in Australia.

    • I should add that that post came about from a conversation going on at the Pure Poison weekend open thread at Crikey (alternative Australian media outlet), particularly Liz A and joe2.

      Compiling another post elsewhere on the same theme I went a-googling. It turns out Watching the Deniers had already joined the same dots the same way a day or so before, but with more info. Well worth a read if you’re interested in seeing what bang Heartland gets for its buck in flar-fung Oz, not to mention his previous post in 2010 on the same Bernardi-Heartland connection.

    • Rather than take up space in this thread, I’ve just put up more on Bernardi – 2 trips to the US funded by Heartland that I’ve been able to find in the interests register (to 2010, main site down at the moment, so I’m unsure if this is really the last) – over at Hot Topic.

  82. Heartland isn’t going to force teachers to inculcate children with denialist propaganda. Teachers are going to teach peer-reviewed science, expose the lies of the denialists, and defend persecuted teachers like Dr. Mann from politicians like Cuccinelli who abuse their high office on behalf of the fossil-fuel industry.

    • Not force, but some ideologically-minded teachers in certain drier parts of the country are likely to pick it up because that after all is what they “believe.” Others would likely cave to pressure from a minority of ideologically-minded parents not to teach the material but to avoid what is “controversial,” which in this context means well-established, mainstream science. Pressure might also come from certain politicians.

      However, even when, against such pressure, you teach science rather than Answers in Ignoramuses you “help” to reinforce the victim class mentality of those you are opposing. In their eyes, this will underscore the importance of their granting allegiance to their self-appointed leadership. Winning isn’t always the point. Other times its only first prize. In the US, in one form or another, this is viewed by many of the participants as a culture war that has been going on since at least the early 1970s.

      Not so incidentally, the American Legislative Exchange Council was originally formed in 1973 as a vehicle for the Religious Right, and during this period it was largely funded by Richard Mellon Scaife. It was only in the 1990s that the corporations really took over.

  83. I have posted a small tribute to Dr. Mashey’s report (plus a little bragging about my two bits worth!) It’s pretty funny that Fred Seitz was still the Chairman of SEPP for two years after he died. Hope you like the picture of Fred Seitz;)

    http://legendofpineridge.blogspot.com/2012/02/dr-john-r-mashey-fake-science-fake.html

  84. Maybe I am being paranoid, but I think that these leaked Heartland documents may distract from and undermine the credibility of Dr. Mashey’s open-source research. Maybe Heartland leaked this themselves to distract from Mashey’s report. Some of the information is bad, but its authenticity is tainted by claims that it was stolen and perhaps fabricated.
    I think it’s really important not to stoop to crimes to get information. I don’t know if a crime was committed or not, but denialist often claim that our scientists are criminals and liars. Heartland knows that people don’t believe criminals. Maybe Heartland are making it look like they are crime victims. They’ve nothing to lose by releasing their own documents because people can read the dirt about them from Mashey. Maybe this Heartland leak is some kind of damage control that is an attempt to undermine the integrity of Mashey’s report.

    I said this on DeSmogblog the other day. Frank has something like this on his site today, too.

  85. Heartland Republicans call for Heartland investigation

    They even refer to Heartland as “…a PR and lobbying organization…”

    • Looks interesting, but I can’t find the original press release at Rep.org, which is weird.

    • Looks like a direct email, but I agree it’s strange.

    • they emphasize the need for conservatives and conservative institutions to engage in truthful discussion of climate science issues and a move away from anti-science syndrome “as William F. Buckley once said, “Conservatism implies a certain submission to reality.””

      Interesting how Buckley fingered this long ago.

      But “a certain submission” is a qualified statement …

      Certainly this supports the notion that “reality has a liberal bias” :)

  86. A few misc notes:
    1) Suzanne got timing slightly wrong.
    Monday night, I’d done the last few edits in conjunction with finishing the IRS Complaint and sealing it in the envelope, as I had potential jury duty the next day and figure out I’d drop it off on the way there. The plan with DSB was for me to do a blog post, iterate with DSB, then post everything Thursday.

    2) I found I had to check between 11:15-11:45 Tues and if asked, be there by 12:45, which is what happened. Good! I’d get a few hours to work on blog post, since I might get pulled into jury duty.

    3) Then chaos erupted, with emails flying all over the place. I already had:
    a) I think, a solid complaint based entirely on public information,
    b) And nothing in the new documents disconfirmed it, so:
    I stopped by the post office about 12:15. DSB+I decided it would be good to get post+fakery up quick. I wrote the post sitting in jury-selection room (good Wifi and power-strips; San Mateo County is pretty good.) At 3PM they told us we were done..

    4) I have NO idea who did it …but it certainly wasn’t Heartland. They may live in alternate universe, but they’d never dump their donor lists like this, and actually the extra info did fill in the holes enough in stuff I hadn’t published to make it clear who Mr Big (A.D.) almost certainly was.
    (I’d left that out, because the IRS certainly would know already, because it’s in the part of the Form 990 the IRS has that is not public. I say no more for now on that.)

    4) Snapple did fine detective work … so maybe great minds think alike …but actually I’d been watching SPPI/Ferguson since the 2007 attack on Naomi. At that point, he had 2 addresses, and I used GoogleMaps sometime in 2008/2009 to see where they were and looked up the domain registration, which has his home address, about 10 minutes away. Of course, I was awaiting SPPI Form 990s … that never came.

    The SPPI/Happer connection: I started watching Happer in 2009 on the APS Petition. That one links to the Happer profile @ GMI, which has a copy of the original. Crescendo… March 2010, p.126 linked to the SPPI web page, where the text is Happer’s but the PDF is Ferguson’s diddled version. That was on the list of funny things that will be useful some day. I don’t recall if I saw the Happer Lab link to SPPI from Snapple or in one of my rummages around Princeton websites in 2009 when chasing APS.

    It’s been a weird week. Meanwhile, the NZ and AU folks are digging around.

    • Correction: IRS wouldn’t have known from Heartland 990s, but with evidence of wrongdoing, would have reason to get the info from DONORS, or would have it from tax returns of the obvious candidates if they claiemd deductions.

  87. Dear Dr. Mashey,
    Thanks for your update. I’m a little disappointed not to be your source for the SPPI mailbox or Happer’s footnotes; however, I guess I will live.
    I don’t have a great mind. I sat in the parking lot of that Haymarket shopping center looking at that UPS store and my GPS a long time before the light bulb went on.
    I think I read somewhere that the Kochs aren’t going to give Heartland money. Is that right? There is so much information, it is hard to absorb.
    I hope that we find out who the Anonymous Donor is.
    I will concede to you that my theory about Heartland releasing their own papers to make themselves the victim and take attention from your report may not be right.
    I agree with the scientists who published their open letter in the Guardian: stealing private papers is wrong. The way you made your case is the right way. I just hope the government listens to you.

    • Snapple (and you don’t have to call me DR … I may get asked for medical help on an airplane … and the last one to call me DR often was Viscount Monckton (see his comment and my reply.),
      don’t be disappointed! You were looking in the right places at the right things, and a great deal of this is communal effort that builds, just like science or technology.

  88. I learned a lot from my “field trip” to the Science and Public Policy “Institute.” It was kind of like Dorothy seeing the Wizard of Oz behind the curtain. The problem wasn’t my GPS (tho’ in Washington they sometimes act wacky) it was that Ferguson is a total fake who has a mailbox for an institute. I told all the science teachers about my hilarious adventure and wrote about my “field trip” here.

    http://legendofpineridge.blogspot.com/2011/01/russia-views-climate-change-as-threat.html

    If denialists think that they are going to confuse teachers about climate science, they might want to reconsider! Teachers are exposing the tricks of these denialist charlatans! Teachers want their students to learn peer-reviewed science, not propaganda spread by the fossil-fuel industry. High school teachers and even high school students can see that something funny is going on when so-called a “scientific institute” is housed in a P.O. box and when a Princeton physicist lets someone else add footnotes from a non-scientist to his undocumented Senate testimony. We aren’t brain-dead like some people!

  89. DeSmogBlog’s Mr. Littlemore (2-16-12) says this about the apocryphal Climate Strategy document:
    [I]f the Heartland Institute can offer any specific criticism of the Climate Strategy or any evidence that it was faked and not, actually, written on Joe Bast’s laptop, printed out and scanned, we would be pleased to consider that evidence.

    http://www.desmogblog.com/it-s-bird-it-s-hockey-stick-it-s-faked-document

  90. Heartland is using this incident for fundraising. They claim they have contacted the FBI; however, a Chicago FBI Special Agent named Royden “Ross” Rice says, based on media accounts, that it doesn’t appear that the FBI has any basis to investigate what happened at the Heartland.

    http://legendofpineridge.blogspot.com/2012/02/heartlands-hypocrisy.html

    I wonder why Joe Bast doesn’t show the emails and email address of the alleged perpetrator. There’s something he’s not telling.

    • Are you surprised? This is what passes for “Justice” under Obama and Holder.

      The Feds are furiously trying to track down the Climategate whistle-blower, who released only true documents, exposing widespread scientific malpractice on the public dime.

      But the Feds claim to have no jurisdiction to pursue identity theft and forgery by the Climate Movement activist who smeared Heartland with lies.

      It figures.

    • Please get your facts straight. The CRU investigation is being handled by the Norfolk constabulary. The only involvement we know for sure from the FBI is the securing of WordPress records of blogs where links to the emails was first posted.

      The Republican report on the CRU email hack is full of errors and unsupported accusations. And these appear to be the same people who leaked confidential testimony given to the Inspector General. This is a shameful abuse of power, which will only get worse if they regain control of the White House and Senate.

      Fortunately, there are at least some rational Republicans who have some integrity and recognize the real issues.

      http://planet3.org/2012/02/17/republicans-for-environmental-protection-re-heartland/

    • No idea who Ross Rice is, but he’s plainly wrong. Wire fraud (which is a very broad category) is a federal crime. That’s not to say that the FBI will investigate this particular case, but they can easily find a crime here if they want.

  91. I wonder why Joe Bast doesn’t just post a screen catch of the email that was sent to the email of the unknown hoaxter by the duped Heartland staffer. A screen catch would show what documents were attached and the email of the person they were sent to. If the duped staffer didn’t send the allegedly fabricated “Climate Strategy” document, the screen catch of the email would show this. The screen catch would also have the email address of the hoaxter the documents were sent to. How strange that Joe Bast doesn’t want to plaster the evidence of both his own innocence and this hoaxter’s trick on the Internet.

  92. A curious coincidence in Chicago:
    It will not be long before A.D. is confirmed in MSM …. and this is not merely embarrassing.

    Chicago, 1929: St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.
    “Public outrage over The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre marked the beginning of the end to Capone’s influence in Chicago. … The massacre also brought the belated attention of the federal government to bear on Capone and his criminal activities.”

    It was rumored Capone did some Bad Things on occasion, but tax evasion put him behind bars…

    Chicago: 2012… although this might be St. Valentine’s Day Expose

    • I like that 71 yr-old retired Col (USAF):

      Dear Mr. Bast, et. al.

      It occurred to me that you will need my address in case you wished to pursue legal action against me.

      My home address is … (home address redacted by me)

      Very good.

  93. DeSmogBlog seems very confident.

  94. Mr. Mashey-
    When you say “Anonymous Donor” you don’t mean Whitney Ball’s outfit. You mean whoever is giving her outfit the big bucks. Is that right?
    Also, it seems like SPPI is sort of moving the money around. Is that right? SPPI’s Bob Ferguson gets paid a lot, so he must be doing something pretty important. I am trying to absorb some of your research this weekend.
    Here’s a picture of Bob Ferguson’s fake science institute.

    http://www.theupsstorelocal.com/5549/

    Probably this is not related, but a fake charity called Navy Veterans gave Cuccinelli 55,000. The head of that fake charity is named “Bobby Thompson.” They think he is hiding out in New Mexico. Bobby Thompson had mailboxes all over the place. He gave money to politicians who would make military charities exempt from reporting. They don’t know who this guy actually is. Bobby Thompson is an alias. The U.S. Marshalls are looking for him.

    http://www.tampabay.com/news/business/fugitive-sham-veterans-charity-creator-bobby-thompson-may-be-hiding-out-in/1213210

  95. Mr. Mashey,

    In your report you discuss the Czech President Vaclav Klaus. The translation of his denialist manifesto “Blue Planet in Green Shackles” was paid for by Russia’s LUKoil.”

    http://legendofpineridge.blogspot.com/2010/09/russian-oil-companies-subverting.html

    I told that on Deep Climate before.

  96. I just sent J.Bast an email telling him of the documents in question somewhere on my harddrive and my inability to erase them

    I offered to mail him my laptop if he first sends me a new one.

    John McManus

  97. A lot of these denialist big-wigs have been tight with Exxon, but then Exxon seems to disappear. Maybe it will turn out that Exxon is the Anonymous Donor of that Whitney Ball. That might explain why Joe Bast is totally freaking out.

    Is Whitney Ball any relation to that Tim Ball in Canada?

    • “A lot of these denialist big-wigs have been tight with Exxon, but then Exxon seems to disappear. “

      Exxon-Mobil supported the worst of the worst anti-science think tanks (like CEI and Heartland), but then stopped after bad publicity. But as far as I know they still support larger right-wing tanks like American Enterprise Insitute and thus are still giving money to promote anti-science climate contrarianism (among ther issues).

      Maybe it will turn out that Exxon is the Anonymous Donor of that Whitney Ball. That might explain why Joe Bast is totally freaking out.

      I haven’t looked into Whitney Ball yet. But I think the only connection is through Donors’ Capital, which is used to support a number of foundations, directed by hidden donors. But I don’t see a connection between Whitney Ball and Heartland itself.

      Is Whitney Ball any relation to that Tim Ball in Canada?

      Highly doubtful.

  98. On page 76 of your report, Joe Bast criticizes Sara Reardon for saying that Heartland gets money from Exxon. Bast denies they have gotten any money recently. Maybe his attack on Reardon is not-very sincere.
    Everyone should read that part.

  99. Joe Bast has replied. He says he has sent my email to his forensic team, his lawyers and the FBI.

    He seems to be ignoring proving provenance in favour of messanger slaying.

    John McManus

  100. Deep Climate writes:
    “I haven’t looked into Whitney Ball yet. But I think the only connection is through Donors’ Capital, which is used to support a number of foundations, directed by hidden donors. But I don’t see a connection between Whitney Ball and Heartland itself.”
    Maybe I am not understanding the diagram on page three. Look at all those arrows. There is a solid one and a dotted one (I think that is the funny money).

  101. I mean Whitney Ball’s Donors Trust. Dr. Mashey writes “Whitney Ball’s DONORS TRUST funded a major expansion of Heartland climate anti-science.” That is on DeSmogblog’s cover page for the attachment.

    What am I saying that you disagree with?

    • I’m just saying that Ball set up Donors Trust for use by like-minded right-wing industrialists who wanted a vehicle for anonymous large donations. But she did not herself provide funding to Heartland, as far as I can see. [Gender corrected].

  102. Pingback: Heartland’s “Anonymous Donor”? | Deep Climate

  103. Whitney Ball is a woman. Her picture is on the top of Dr. Mashey’s report.

    “Ms. Ball is President and Chief Executive Officer of DonorsTrust, a donor-advised fund and community foundation established to promote liberty through limited government, personal responsibility, and free enterprise. Before launching DonorsTrust, Ms. Ball served as Executive Director of The Philanthropy Roundtable, as well as Director of Development at the Cato Institute. She was also Director of Finance for the Education and Research Institute and Circulation Manager of Consumers’ Research Magazine. Additionally, Ms. Ball has consulted with a number of nonprofit organizations and served on governing boards and committees of local volunteer organizations. Currently, Ms. Ball serves on the boards of Donors Capital Fund and the State Policy Network.”

    https://www.donorstrust.org/whitneybio.html

  104. Watching the Deniers

    @ Robert Murphy, the deniers are playing from the same play book as the creationists. “Teach the controversy” is the name of the strategey.

    Consider:
    >>Ian Plimer has just released a book aimed at school kids, which they propose to give away to teachers.
    >> Conservative Liberal politician Sen. Cory Bernardi (who has close ties to Heartland) is promoting the idea that “both sides” have to be taught in a recent article here in Australia.
    >> The Heartland K-12 program designed to “dissaude teachers”.

    Does anyone else see a pattern here?They are working in lock step to undermine education.

    • WatchingTheDeniers wrote, “the deniers are playing from the same play book as the creationists… Consider: … The Heartland K-12 program designed to “dissaude teachers”. Does anyone else see a pattern here?”

      Yes, I see a pattern: the Left is lying. Again.

      That bit about dissuading teachers from teaching science was a fabrication from some Climate Movement leftist, to smear Heartland. Of course.

      Whether the topic is Climate or Intelligent Design or economics or sexuality or religion or anything else in which the Left has a deeply invested position, the one thing that you can count on is that there’s no level of unethical behavior, dishonesty, and sheer viciousness to which Leftists will hesitate to stoop, to promote their point of view, and to suppress all others.

    • That bit about dissuading teachers from teaching science was a fabrication from some Climate Movement leftist, to smear Heartland. Of course.

      The recipient of the contract has publicly acknowledged that he’s contracting to do the work and that his goal, while not precisely using the words “dissuade teachers”, is, shall we say, compatible with that phrase.

    • When you “teach the controversy”, whether evolution or climate science, you are avoiding the actual science in favour of presenting an alternative (non-scientific) point of view as equally valid (or more so). The misleading factoids quoted in the project description presumably come from Wojick’s own project proposal. They include a common contrarian meme: that since natural carbon flux is much greater than human emissions, human emissions can not be considered “pollution”. But surely even Wojick understands that virtually *all* the rise in atmospheric CO2 in the last two centuries (around 40% as mentioned by Gavin’s Pussycat above) is down to human activities. Yet in his course, this basic scientific fact would be avoided, in favour of a meaningless and highly misleading dichotomy of natural vs human emissions.

      That’s propaganda, not science education. And taxpayers should not have to subsidize this nonsense via Heartland’s illegitimate charitable tax status.

    • The parallels

      At least in the United States you have ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council. It began back in 1973 and was primarily a vehicle for the Religious Right largely funded by Richard Mellon Scaife. Back in the 1990s it was corporatized, with corporations actually voting on what model legislation should be attempted at the state level. Staunch conservative politicians then change the title or or otherwise make a few changes at the edges then propose the bills as their own. Anyway, to make a long story short, the “teach the controversy” approach to climate was first proposed there.

      The corporate board includes Koch Companies Public Sector, but it also includes Energy Future Holdings Corp. and Peabody Energy. Other corporate members include Alliant Energy, American Electric Power, Amoco (which merged with BP), ARCO (which merged with BP), Arizona Public Service Company (which is into coal), Artemis Exploration (Canadian oil), Ashland Oil, and Atmos Energy. And those are just the fossil fuel company corporate members that begin with A. I won’t both people with the other twenty-five letters.

      Wouldn’t be surprised if the same is true with respect to creationism. But nowadays climate and evolution deniers have been trying to pass legislation that combines both — as they can claim it isn’t about one or the other, but about teaching “critical thinking skills,” each using the other to cloak their own motives. And NCSE (the National Center for Science Education) is now involved in the defense of climatology in addition to its original focus on evolutionary biology. And of course creationists can help put more feet on the ground for corporations, so it is in the interest of fossil fuel companies to work with creationists in the name of religion.

  105. Martin Vermeer makes a good point at Planet3.0

    “One thing you all seem to be missing, is that it was the content of the strategy memo that allowed Gleick to credibly impersonate a Board member.

    Whoever wrote (or faked) this memo, had independent inside knowledge of what was going on at Heartland, before Gleick obtained any of the other docs.”

    • Vermeer was wrong. The content of the strategy memo was not what allowed Gleick to impersonate a board member. All he needed to know was a board member’s name and a meeting date. He just called up, and said something like, “Hi, this is so-and-so. I’m a board member, and I’ve had an email problem and lost my materials for the meeting. Would you mind resending them? Oh, and please use my new gmail address, that works better for me, these days.”

      Much of the info in the forged strategy memo duplicated info found in the other documents, so it would appear that the forger had access to at least some of the other documents, or similar materials. So who had access to the other documents?

      Well, Heartland Board members, of course, and staff.

      And Gleick, the thief, of course.

      And whoever else Gleick shared the stolen documents with. Vermeer rules out Gleick and his friends… why? Because Gleick says he’s not the forger, and that’s proof enough for us? Because Gleick would never lie?

      Gleick says the the forged document was created before he stole the meeting package, but we have only Gleick’s word for that. We know it was scanned afterword.

      It’s possible that someone was snooping on a Board member’s emails, perhaps at an ISP, or via a trojan infection on a PC, or similar. But I think it is more likely that Gleick, and/or a friend of his with whom he shared the stolen documents, created it.

      The timing of Gleick’s confession seems like damage control, not an awakening conscience. Gleick didn’t confess until he realized that Mosher had figured out that Gleick was probably the culprit. Mosher posted that he was hot on the trail of the culprit’s IP address, and Gleick realized that he hadn’t taken sufficient precautions to protect his anonymity, and was going to be fingered as the thief. So Gleick quickly confessed to as little as possible, but not to the worst part. Damage control.

      But, as Mosher noticed, the way the forged document is written still suggests that Gleick was the author:

      http://rankexploits.com/musings/2012/tell-me-whats-horrible-about-this/#comment-89946

    • Frankly I don’t find either explanation very satisfying or compelling. i.e. I’m not convinced that Joe Bast wrote that memo and then a disgruntled employee or some such got a hold of it and mailed a copy to Gleick. But find it even less plausible that Gleick made it up out of whole cloth, just to try and “sex up” the collection of what we now know are actual bona fide Heartland documents.

      Few seem to consider the possibility that Gleick did receive it in the mail, but that the document is still not what it is purported to be.

      As to how Gleick managed to convince Heartland, I suppose much of it will come out in court.

    • Ah, Dave-“I noticed several suspicious things about it”-Burton / ncdave4life. Nice to see an original comment instead of copy&paste astroturfing which got to be tweeted about.

      Martin Vermeer must be onto something.

    • I have thought it might have been faked and then mailed to Gleick to lure him into making it public. If that turns out to be the case, there is a pretty obvious suspect.

  106. Pingback: Gleick admits to deception and leaking Heartland documents « Understanding Climate Risk

  107. National Wildlife Federation tells Heartland where to stick their cease and desist letter.

    NWF Pledges to Fight Heartland Institute Intimidation Campaign

    • This would be the National Wildlife Federation that endorsed Ronald Reagan not once, but twice, for President (though it did encourage him to lose James Watts).

      Just for those of you non-Americans keeping score at home regarding how far to the right the anti-science and bible-thumping types have managed to push the Republican Party.

  108. Microsoft. It figures. Bill Gates has evidently thrown his stake in with the rightwing corporatists. You see it also with his rabid alignment with the GMO industry and such notorious creeps as Monsanto which is causing so much trouble worldwide.

    • To be fair it seems they give software to any non-profit, and then can recoup some of the value as a tax deduction (i.e. it’s not a cash donation). But maybe they should take a closer look at who they are supporting in this way.

    • Well, their policy is intentionally blind to ideology.

      Speaking as someone who was once a board member of a non-profit who took advantage of their policy, I think it’s a good thing. It insulates them from controversy. And controversy cuts both ways. In my case, the non-profit I served as director for was one of the two lead plaintiffs in the lawsuit that led to an injunction on old-growth timber harvest in the Pacific Northwest, that later led to the Northwest Forest Plan and that has largely put an end to old-growth timber harvest in the region. If MS were to do ideological screening, can you imagine the screaming they’d be subjected to for donating software to such organizations? How about Earth First! or the Sierra Club or …

      See?

      Now, if the IRS revokes Heartland’s 501(3)(c) status, then MS will automatically stop donating to them. That’s as it should be.

  109. Willis Eschenbach

    Robert | February 14, 2012 at 11:08 pm

    Patrick,
    Give it a rest. Oil companies spend more on lobbying per year than than the entire budget of Greenpeace etc…

    Instead of giving it a rest, let’s give it a fact check …

    Of all the companies and organizations lobbying in Washington, DC, ExxonMobil was the twelfth highest spender on lobbyists through 2004. (2) ExxonMobil spent $7.56 million on lobbying in 2004 – $2.3 million more than its closest competitor. In 2005, ExxonMobil spent $7.14 million, but dropped to second place after Chevron radically increased its spending by almost three million. In comparison, BP spent $2.8 million and Shell spent $1.4 million on lobbying.

    SOURCE ExposeExxon.com

    That gives us a total of about $20 million per year for the Big Four spending on lobbying. Let’s double that to include companies like Total and the the other minors, actually that’s probably way too much, they’re pretty small compared to any one of the Big Four, so we’d be safe to call it about $30 million per year for total oil company spending on lobbying.

    Greenpeace budget? Around $300 million … the sad truth is, the Greenpeace budget BY ITSELF, not including WWF or any of the others, is about TEN TIMES LARGER than the COMBINED lobbying spending of all of the world’s oil companies.

    As Satchell Paige remarked, “It ain’t the things you don’t know that hurt you; it’s the things you know that just ain’t so!”

    All the best,

    w.

    • Talk about apples and oranges!

    • Willis, what’s the combined budget for all of the oil, coal and gas companies out there, compared to Greenpeace’s, WWF’s, etc, combined budgets? It is only fair to compare like for like, yes, and not specify lobbying spend on one side and total budget for the other?

    • Not to mention there is no “Greenpeace”. There are many greenpeaces, including “Greenpeace USA”. My understanding is that Greenpeace USA is not a 501(3)(c) (they have a separate fund that is, which restricts itself to doing those things permissible by a 501(3)(c), a strategy Heartland may want to take up in the future), so they can lobby.

      We will let Willis support his claim with solid figures on how much of GP USA’s budget is spent lobbying congress …

    • Dhogaza, thanks for that info.

      Greenpeace: Membership FAQs
      “Greenpeace, Inc. is a campaigning and lobbying organization and is registered as a 501(c)(4) entity. Contributions to Greenpeace, Inc. are not tax deductible.”

    • Willis Eschenbach

      You guys complaining that I am comparing apples and oranges, and saying things like

      It is only fair to compare like for like, yes, and not specify lobbying spend on one side and total budget for the other?

      apparently failed to read my post.

      I was responding to this claim, which I quoted but y’all apparently didn’t bother to read (emphasis mine):

      Robert | February 14, 2012 at 11:08 pm

      Patrick,
      Give it a rest. Oil companies spend more on lobbying per year than than the entire budget of Greenpeace etc…

      You do see the part where he (not I) is comparing oil company lobbying expenditures to the entire budget of Greenpeace, yes?

      I was merely showing that his claim was wrong. As you will note I did not make any further claims or draw any further conclusions. I merely showed that his claim was in error, so please direct any and all “apples and oranges” complaints to Patrick.

      All the best,

      w.

    • Well, you’re the one who quoted the $300 million figure, which is an estimate of all Greenpeace’s activities worldwide. The original comparison was from Patrick who used the same misleading comparison.

      Sure, Robert didn’t explicitly point out that that was an egregiously misleading comparison, so let me do that now.

      Here is an estimate of Greenpeace’s spending *in the U.S.* from a decidedly unfriendly source:

      In the United States, however, Greenpeace is a relatively modest activist group, spending about $10 million per year. And the lion’s share of that budget in recent years has gone to outrageous attempts to smear agricultural biotech products, consumer electronics, and the logging and fishing industries.

      Got that? That’s $10 million in the U.S., of which very little is being spent on climate change issues.

      So if you do a proper apples-to-apples comparison, it looks like Robert’s point holds up pretty well. And you and Patrick *are* indulging in highly misleading comparisons. But I’m not complaining (what good would that do). I’m just pointing out the facts.

    • Willis Eschenbach

      Ah, well, errors are a fact of life. I should have closed with “please direct any and all “apples and oranges” complaints to Robert” and not to Patrick, as it was Robert who made the comparison of oil company lobbying expenditures with Greenpeace’s total budget.

      w.

    • It should be noted that the current government of Canada is doing a fair bit of lobbying for the oil industry, wasting their time and my tax dollars on that instead of doing their proper job of governing for the benefit of Canadians. But I don’t know the dollar value of that.

    • Willis Eschenbach

      DeepClimate, you claim a Greenpeace US budget of $10 million … but I find a number of sites like this one, an interview with the Executive Director of Greenpeace USA that puts it at thirty million.

      However, Robert said nothing about Greenpeace USA, just “Greenpeace”.

      Rob Honeycutt said above that the issue was the Heartland secrecy, and that:

      Interestingly though, you can go to the Greenpeace website and see exactly how they spend their money. You don’t have to wait for someone to hack into their system.

      However, I couldn’t find such a site that listed their entire budget, and apparently neither can DeepClimate. Anyone have a URL that shows how they spend the thirty million? Rob?

      Also, I find no web site where Greenpeace lists their donors and how much they gave … which was one of the things illegally revealed through Gleick’s wire fraud. Anyone have the corresponding information on Greenpeace donors? I mean if the claim is that the issue is secrecy as Rob claims … then why is Greenpeace keeping the amounts their donors gave a big secret?

      Thanks to all, it’s a fascinating world and a fascinating debate,

      w.

    • I found Greenpeace International’s budget which is about $50 million. That includes contributions from the various Greenpeace national offices including the U.S.

      As was mentioned before, Greenpeace is really a number of organizations. If you are having trouble finding the annual reports, here are a couple of useful links for you. Knock yourself out.

      Greenpeace USA annual reports here:

      http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/about/reports/

      Greenpeace International

      http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/about/reports/

      Greenpeace USA lists supporters in their annual reports, but do not place this section online. I don’t know if donation amounts are included, but this is already clearly more transparent than Heartland.

      In Canada, the contrast between the Fraser Institute and Pembina Institute is striking. Fraser lists no individual donors, and no donation amounts, although foundation grants can be determined in other ways (similar to the U.S.). Pembina lists all donors and places them in dollar range categories.

      In general, environmental organizations are much more transparent than right-wing think tanks.

      Now you get one more kick at this, then I think we all have better things to do than meander off topic examining these various tired memes. Thanks!

    • “Radford’s “Frontline” initiative nearly doubled Greenpeace USA’s budget to $30 million.”

      “The 20 biggest-spending oil, mining, and electric utility companies shelled out $242 million on lobbying from January 2009 to June 2010.”

      Break that 18-month period down to 12 months and it’s $161 million. Take out everyone other than “oil companies” in specific and it’s still about $100 million. So even by the admittedly goofy total-budget vs lobbying-budget standard, oil companies are dropping a lot more money on lobbying than Greenpeace has to spend on everything. But the fundamental point holds: there is a profound funding disparity between pro-and anti-science groups

      By the way, I stopped by ExposeExxon.com… it’s apparently a spam WordPress site with hardhitting posts like “Discount Credit Cards for Your Gas Savings,” “Free Online Articles Directory,” etc. What an exposé!

    • ExxonSecrets.org is where they should have gone. Oh well.

    • Yes, as PDA says the Greenpeace USA budget has gone up recently.

      http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/Global/usa/planet3/PDFs/ANNUAL_REPORT2010-11.pdf

      In 2010, $22.2 million was spent on campaigns, including $2.3 million on the climate campaign. (There’s also an additional $4.3 million for fundraising and management).

      But as PDA points out that still dwarfed by energy lobbying. And that’s not even counting energy companies direct political support, support for think tanks, “greenwash” advertising and on and on.

    • DC – “Greenpeace USA lists supporters in their annual reports, but do not place this section online. I don’t know if donation amounts are included, but this is already clearly more transparent than Heartland.”

      Greenpeace are signatories of the INGO Accountability Charter. Greenpeace state on their website that they refuse any significant anonymous donations to ensure they maintain their independence.

  110. To lighten things up a bit, Heartland’s Executive Editor slips up with regards to her attitude to teachers.

    And these people think they have something worthwhile to add to the school curriculum.

    • Isn’t that special.

      That’s an interesting blog. It has another post about Mashey’s work:

      “…Mashey is all over them like white on rice in a glass of milk on a paper plate in a snowstorm….”

      http://pathteacheroneword.blogspot.com/2012/02/john-masheys-mission-to-expose-501c3.html

    • I’m a teacher, and I don’t think Heartland’s ignorant materials will convince science teachers or administrators. Teachers and administrators are pushing back and supporting climate scientists. Teachers know how to look up reliable, peer-reviewed information on the Internet. We know that our textbooks are the result of peer-reviewed science. In Catholic schools, we can point to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, which says that man is causing climate change. We don’t need to listen to a greedy, mendacious dope like Joe Bast.

      Mrs. Bast trashes teachers, but according to Sourcewatch, Mr. Bast “studied economics as an undergraduate” at the University of Chicago[2] but did not complete the degree.[3]”

      http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Joseph_Bast

      Mrs. Bast calls teachers ignorant, but we have university degrees. I would like Mr. Bast to tell us if he has a university degree and what his major was.

    • Here is the opening of Rep. Grijalva’s statement.

      Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva, the ranking member of the House Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands, today called for a full Natural Resources Committee hearing to determine whether a high-ranking Department of the Interior (DOI) official received outside payments from a conservative group that seeks to influence federal policy. In a letter this morning addressed to Reps. Doc Hastings and Ed Markey, the Committee chairman and ranking member, Grijalva urges the Committee to determine whether Indur Goklany, the DOI Assistant Director of Programs, Science and Technology Policy, received money he was promised by the Heartland Institute for writing a chapter in a book focused on climate policy in apparent violation of federal rules, among other issues.

  111. Woo-hoo! More from Gary Wamsley, about John Reisman complaining to the FBI about Heartland’s threats to Wamsley:

    http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/2012/02/20/28790/

    Also, analysis by Richard Black:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-17126699

  112. If anyone needs an occasional giggle at all of this, follow Greenophobe on Twitter.

  113. Wow, a lot of heat here. Perhaps I can introduce a bit of light to accompany the heat. Probably result in fire but that’s ok :)

    1) Some appear to be making a big deal out of an “Institute” whose address is a PO Box and there’s no actual owned or leased building. Ummm… unless someone is *claiming* to have a building, this is actually the wave of the future. For many reasons, a variety of high level consulting teams and institutes, in many fields, have essentially gone virtual. I know advisory “Institutes” of one to half a dozen or more consultants, all of whom are very legitimate, and all of whom have anywhere from zero (home only) to one Voffice (a place for meetings only.)

    2) The following is NOT in defense of Heartland or any other nonprofit for that matter. The following is based on years of coming alongside various non profits, leaders, non-profit financial-related institutions, foundations, accountability efforts, etc etc. The kinds of errors and practices John Mashey found while closely examining Heartland are (sadly) quite common. To pick a well known, large and somewhat similar organization from an opposite bent, just go pull the 990’s for Tides Foundation (about 15 times bigger than Heartland.) You’ll find huge overseas grants supported only by people’s unverified claims to be doing appropriate work. Highly paid consultants. “Biased” expenditures of many kinds, etc. The world of non-profit accounting, effective donation use, grant tracking etc is clearly not a tightly run ship… and everybody knows it. Some estimate that only about 1/4 of all grantmaking into the developing world actually gets used for the intended purpose. [The field of John and my roots — IT — can’t boast too much. Approx 3/4 of all major IT projects are considered failures: way over budget/resources, under-deliver, etc.)

    Again, I’m not saying there’s no fire here. But perhaps we should take a sober look at what we expect to find as a scientific “control” for this examination.

    • Some actual citations of evidence of your claims would be nice.

      — frank

    • The Tides Foundation is much more transparent and its projects much more defensible in general than Heartland and other right-wing think tanks.

      Tides has even funded actual scientific work that the industry and government refused to support, such as David Schindler’s work demonstrating contamination of the Athabasca watershed from oil sands operations. Those papers sparked a plan to replace of the current inadequate joint industry-government monitoring with a “world class” system based on transparency and scientific principles.

      Heartland funds disinformation, plain and simple. If you want to make your case, point to a Tides funded study that is anywhere near as misleading and error-ridden as the NIPCC.

    • Followup to DC and Frank’s replies:

      “virtual” institutes

      Providing solid evidence for this isn’t all that easy. Non-profits are going virtual for many reasons, some of which necessarily are hidden.

      Why hidden:
      a) People like to continue to appear to have substantial infrastructure, so they’ll work hard to hide their virtuality.
      b) There is a small but growing wave of organizations that are not only virtualizing their operations, they are virtualizing the entity itself because they don’t want to deal with the ever-more-onerous (USA) reporting requirements for non-profits. (In other words, the organization disbands, farms out its people to other entities, which loan the people back to a working group which actually accomplishes the initiatives.) The (USA) reporting requirements for non-profits are far more onerous than required of for-profit corporations, even though no taxes are paid by non-profits. There are so many picky details, it is becoming difficult to fill out the form perfectly every time. (Recent FASB rule changes were SO tough, that even the most-compliant non-profits received a management “non-compliance” letter during their audit, simply because not even the CPA firms could initially determine what a compliant org’n would look like!

      Bottom line: I’ll have to consider, and ask permission, whether any of the virtual institutes I know are willing to be made visible as such. [If I knew you face-to-face we could arrange a mutual NDA and I could tell you stories privately, but that’s hardly helpful in the blog format :)]

      HI vs Tides
      Note that I’m not discussing in any way the content of the communications of either organization. Feel free to lambaste or praise one or the other organization all you want. They are both in the business of promoting something, and I expect them to do so. The law permits non-profits to promote essentially ANY point of view compatible with their stated purpose. Freedom of speech and all that… they are certainly allowed to say things we think are stupid, etc.

      (DC, Tides has projects that are reasonably “mainstream” but also projects that are out there quite a bit and hardly apolitical. They pour money into IGC (igc.org), Media Matters, Fenton Comm’s, EMS, etc. You may like such entities but it’s hard to claim they are unbiased or mainstream.)

      For evidence of the claims I made, please go to GuideStar, log in, and download any of the 990 forms from both organizations.
      * You’ll find a list of funds going to overseas organizations. HI gives little unredacted info. Tides gives no more actual info, just boilerplate legalese that essentially says “they have signed a statement saying they will do appropriate things with the money, and we believe them.” (One of the problems in international non-profit finance is that true financial auditing is incredibly rare, for many reasons, most of which make no sense to western sensibilities. One is lack of trust (“why should I reveal our finances to an outside auditor? Who knows what they would do with the info!”) One is that the entire financial infrastructure in many places is… looser… than here. No invoices, no receipts, lots of cash transactions, etc etc.)
      * You’ll find a list of all consultants paid more than $100k/year — both have them.
      * Dig far enough and you’ll easily discover that each organization tends to fund projects promoting a particular POV. Not neutral by any means.

      I’m rather certain any reader will agree more with one organization than the other on most topics. No surprise there.

      Anyway, I hope that’s at least a little helpful.

      Blessings,
      MrPete

    • For evidence of the claims I made, please go to GuideStar, log in, and download any of the 990 forms from both organizations.

      You mean you can’t actually provide any citations for your claims? A scanned pages from Tides’s 990 form showing what you allege would be nice.

      — frank

    • Official citations: these are present on all 990’s (if relevant. E.g. apparently HI had no overseas projects in 2010)
      * Independent Contractors paid >$100k: Form 990, Part VII, Section B
      * Overseas projects/activities: Form 990, Schedule F
      * Domestic internal projects/activities: Form 990, Part III
      * Domestic grantmaking/funding: Form 990, Schedule I

      Frank, I’m going to be a bit of a pain and ask you to do a bit of homework yourself. You’re asking me to download the PDF, take it apart, scan the image, upload, find a way to link it here. If I do it all for you, you won’t value the effort. Time to learn how to do some minor work for yourself.

      GuideStar makes 990’s visible to people who register a user ID (no charge.) It is quite easy to do. Quite easy to search and find any non profit.

      Along the way you will discover the vast amount of info that’s already publicly available on every non-profit organization in the USA. Try it; you might learn something valuable.

    • Weird, MrPete. I’d thought that you had already done all that homework, given that you are the one lobbing all those accusations against the Tides Foundation.

      Or did your dog just eat your homework?

      — frank

    • 990 Finder’s an alternative. Also search at Guidestar or 990Finder on American Legislative Council, which Bast and Lakely are now members of, according to Lead411.

    • THIS COMMENT was meant be here, sorry.

    • C’mon Frank, let’s be reasonable and maybe even polite.
      I do my homework by reading the documents… online. It’s quite a bit more work to convert into uploadable form, get it uploaded etc etc etc.

      I’m not making accusations against any particular organization. I only picked Tides because they are a similar-style organization of an opposite bent. As I said, I am quite sure you can find similar evidence for many many similar kinds of organizations. While not holding to ideals of fiduciary responsibility as much as we’d like, there’s nothing illegal about these things — they are part of the standard 990 filing, after all :)

    • You still haven’t made any sort of case that Tides is supporting science misinformation as Heartland is. Tides is much more transparent than Heartland (or more aptly Donors Capital), and you have not adduced any evidence to the contrary.

      Finally you have not presented any evidence that Tides has supported illegitimate foreign (i.e. non-charitable) endeavours as Heartland has in its support of the NRSP and ICSC (both associated with Tom Harris, and both lacking the requisite charitable status). Furthermore, Heartland has not provided sufficient information to check whether some of its other foreign recipients are bona fide. You don’t need to show a screenshot of the relevant PDF to prove your case about case about Tides. But you do need to present specific examples and point to the specific 990 (year, section, page) you think backs you up.

      And by the way, Media Matters supplied the figures concerning donations to Heartland that I quoted. I have found them quite reliable in their presentation of facts. It’s ironic that Tides is supporting an organization that helps collate 990 information providing greater transparency than right-wing foundations and their primary donors do on their own.

      Donors Capital exists to support various right-wing causes and hide the source of extremely large individual supporters of those causes. Legitimate foundations do not operate that way.

    • DC,
      With respect to Donors Capital, Tides is more like Donors Capital in the sense that they are both DAF-type foundations.
      DAF’s (Donor Advised Funds) are pretty common vehicles for donors to remain reasonably anonymous while supporting the initiatives of their choice.
      There are a zillion DAF-model foundations out there; most Community Foundations follow model. Typically, people are happy to see these things when used to support initiatives they like (obviously you like what Tides supports) and upset when they support initiatives they despise (Donors Capital for you.)
      The basic premise from a tax-exempt perspective is that:
      * In theory the donor has 100% turned over control of funds to the foundation.
      * The money is no longer the donor’s
      * The donor can advise but not control how undistributed funds are invested
      * The donor can advise but not control how funds are to be distributed
      * The foundation requires a certain percentage of donated funds to be distributed annually without any donor advice (ie the foundation must demonstrate that it is not purely a pass-through.)
      With any DAF-type foundation, you are likely to find it difficult to discover exactly where all the money comes from. That, plus the fact that such entities generally function as an automatic “wash” for large donations, converting them from private into public support, are two of the main reasons these entities exist.

      Overall, in spite of the opportunity for abuse, they serve a very good function: they encourage huge charitable transfer of funds from the wealthy to various good initiatives… far more in the USA than any other nation on earth.

      With respect to “requisite charitable status” of overseas initiatives, it is a bit difficult to require that of all overseas initiatives; I doubt that complaint can go far. Many nations on earth don’t even have such a status as a possibility. As I noted earlier there aren’t even good audits in most cases internationally. Ultimately, it comes down to the sending organization bearing fiduciary responsibility for ensuring that funds are used appropriately. And the scuttlebutt is that only a fraction of the billions sent overseas are used appropriately. Incredibly, government aid going overseas is generally considered even worse in that respect.

      I went to the 2010 Tides 990 and pulled at random one grant to an organization in India (a place I know something about). They sent $50k to an Ashram (p69). I’m sure this is a fine organization (and thus have not given the exact name; it is near the bottom of the page.) But it would be quite difficult to prove it!
      * The good news: India requires any recipient of foreign funds to be licensed appropriately, via something called an “FCRA.” And this organization does have an FCRA (just google their name and FCRA.) If that were missing, it could be immediate jail time for the leadership so this is VERY basic in the Indian context.
      * Beyond that, there is NO visible evidence that the FCRA rules are being followed (VERY picky, enabling opponents to complain loudly — if you even accidentally deposit a donation to the wrong account, and correct the problem ASAP, you can get in big trouble! Pretty ridiculous.)
      * No visible evidence of financial accountability. Don’t know their budget, don’t know how the money is spent. Thus, no evidence that they are avoiding embezzlement, etc. (I have seen instances where to western eyes everything looks fine, yet there are real problems. We would think $10m (US) for 1,000 workers would be quite reasonable… yet over there it could be that half of that is siphoned off privately because the actual standard might be $5k a year, or less, per employee.)
      * No visible evidence of truly independent board leadership, and this would be impossible for non-Indians to verify because we don’t understand how the caste system works (yes, it supposedly is gone but culturally very alive.) Everyone on the board could be from the same “caste” and you would not know it. If they were, they would likely say anything to defend their leader.

      Bottom line: there is no proof that this organization is fully compliant, even in a nation (India) that has lots of rules and regulations for such tings. And based on experience, if one were to go hunting in more depth (which often must be done on the ground because there is so little visibility online)… it is quite likely that a large percentage of overseas grants have various hidden fidiciary problems.

      That’s just one example. There are much larger pea-under-the-thimble issues when it comes to Tides. In fact, one could say of Tides exactly what you (DC) wrote about Donors Capital: Tides Foundation exists to support various left-wing causes and hide the source of extremely large individual supporters of those causes.

      Again, please note my perspective: many of these organizations, even those with the worst accountability and even those who embezzle funds (to their shame), ALSO do a lot of good work that’s much appreciated by at least some people (or they wouldn’t gain much support.)

      This is why, although I strongly disagree with you on Media Matters because it is clearly a biased source of information, that has a very clear political bent and is on the edge with respect to many of its own activities (remember the 2009 email re a strategy to destroy Fox News?)… it still does reveal accurate and important information about at least some groups, while at the same time providing inaccurate and biased information about others.

      Some have looked at the overall problem and have concluded that in general there are two directions one could go, described in the extreme as:
      * Encourage greater charitable giving, and good works; set loose rules of engagement. Prosecute abuses if/as they come up.
      * Tie everyone up in picayune rules, and encourage everyone to poke at the organizations they don’t like. Spend 40% or more of donated funds on accountability structures and verification expenses.
      Those are extremes. We’ve been more at the first end, rapidly heading toward the second. I prefer something in the middle, with a bias toward the former because more giving is in general a Good Thing — people are better people when they give money away. (In reality, I believe rules and government oversight can never accomplish what is needed. Greedy and unethical people can find a way to get away with their nefarious intent. Some are just better at it than others.)

      Whew. So we have a bunch of non-profits, with relatively hidden funding sources, sometimes good projects done that hopefully almost everyone can appreciate, sometimes projects that some love and others hate. And all around, a general poor level of accountability such that a detractor could poke hard and find evidence of non-reporting, zero proof of fiduciary duty being upheld, etc. Oh, and international funding such that accountability standards for one culture are not upheld in the other culture. (eg the US requires transparent financials, other nations do not.)

      All in all, I maintain my conclusion: yes, you’ve found holes in an organization’s accountability. I am not surprised. And I am not surprised that you come to the defense of one organization whose politics are agreeable to you, while you lambaste another whose politics you find abhorrent. Even though the one you agree with is responsible for much of the smear PR that leads you to think as badly as you do about your political opponents!

      I’ll finish with food for thought, a quote I recently heard, from Patrick Moynihan:
      “The central conservative truth is that it is culture, not politics, that determines the success of a society. The central liberal truth is that politics can change a culture and save it from itself.”

    • Whew, indeed.

      I need to disabuse you of this notion.

      “Even though the one you agree with is responsible for much of the smear PR that leads you to think as badly as you do about your political opponents!”

      First, as usual you express banal generalities without any evidence whatsoever. Please give a specific example of Tides-funded “smear PR” so we can evaluate your claim. Thanks!

      Second, my evaluation of climate disinformation is derived from a comparison of the actual science to the output of Friends of Science, Fraser Institute, ICSC etc.

      For example, I compared the IPCC AR4 to the Fraser Institute’s ISPM and found glaring errors, cherrypicking and general incompetence and bias. Moreover, these organizations are severely lacking in transparency, and indulge in highly questionable PR tactics.

  114. Willis Eschenbach

    Snapple | February 25, 2012 at 10:13 am |

    I’m a teacher, and I don’t think Heartland’s ignorant materials will convince science teachers or administrators.

    Perhaps if you posted some links to examples of “Heartland’s ignorant materials” we could make up our own minds about whether or not they are convincing. Not links to someone making claims about the materials. Links to the actual “ignorant materials” themselves that you find so objectionable.

    Many thanks for the links,

    w.

    • Willis, the Heartland Institute’s scientific position on the phenomenon of global warming and climate change are well known. Unless that position has changed in the last week, it is incumbent upon you to provide us with evidence that their unscientific and untenable scientific understanding will not percolate into the educational materials that they have already admitted to investment. Furthermore, I can legitimately question why an institution with such a biased and untenable positions contrary to well vetted and understood scientific results and observable phenomena should be allowed to be entertained in publicly funded institutions, particularly and especially our public schools and their teachers. Thanks in advance for your lucid explanations of why this should be the case.

    • Willis Eschenbach

      Thanks, Thomas, but the question was directed to the man making the allegations of “ignorant materials”, not to you. I’m waiting for an answer to a specific question, one that you cannot answer, viz: exactly what documents is Snapple talking about? I fear regarding that question, your “answer” is no answer at all.

      All the best,

      w.

    • Willis might remember that Heartland distributed Australian ‘skeptic’ Jo Nova’s ‘The Skeptics Handbook’ to educators in the US. Clearly this threadbare bit of agitprop appeared convincing to Heartlands eminent education committee,for a season at least.

    • Scroll down to see Heartland’s ignorant books.

      http://news.heartland.org/issues/environment

      Here is their moronic manifesto about climate change.

      http://news.heartland.org/ideas/global-warming-not-crisis

      It’s fake science.

    • These books look like the IPCC books on the surface, but they quote denialists who aren’t cited in peer-reviewed literature. They even cite that charlatan Monckton.

    • Here is one of their moronic comments:
      “Science doesn’t advance by “consensus.” A single scientist or study can disprove a theory that is embraced by the vast majority of scientists. The search for a consensus is actually part of what philosophers call “post-normal science,” which isn’t really science at all. Still, many people ask: What do scientists believe?”

      http://news.heartland.org/ideas/global-warming-not-crisis

    • Willis Eschenbach

      Snapple | February 25, 2012 at 8:08 pm |

      Here is one of their moronic comments:
      “Science doesn’t advance by “consensus.” A single scientist or study can disprove a theory that is embraced by the vast majority of scientists.

      Now I’m really confused. Are you seriously claiming that a single scientist or study cannot disprove a theory that is embraced by the vast majority of scientists? You might want to check with a scientist friend or two before getting too emphatic about how that statement is “moronic”.

      w.

    • Desmogblog observes:
      “Given that donations to Heartland count as “charitable” deductions, it would be interesting to know if anyone is claiming a second deduction on Heartland’s follow-on “donation” to Idso’s CSCDGC. For that matter, is there a third potential deduction when Idso passes the money along to Robert Ferguson at the Science and Public Policy Institute – another policy hothouse whose “educational” output appears to be exclusively PR that aligns closely to the interests of Heartland’s major funders.”

      http://www.desmogblog.com/heartland-funding-disinformation-echo-chamber

      This whole set-up appears to be cobbled together in order to evade taxes.

    • Willis Eschenbach

      Snapple | February 25, 2012 at 7:32 pm |

      Scroll down to see Heartland’s ignorant books.

      http://news.heartland.org/issues/environment

      Here is their moronic manifesto about climate change.

      http://news.heartland.org/ideas/global-warming-not-crisis

      My apologies, Snapple. From your comments about teachers and “ignorant materials” I was sure you were talking about educational materials, which to me means curricula, lesson plans, teacher’s notes, A/V materials, and the like. So I was curious which educational materials you were referring to. My mistake.

      But if all you are talking about are the books listed on Heartland’s web page, what’s the tie-in to education? I mean, Greenpeace has books on their web page … is that supposed to be connected to education as well?

      This relates to a larger point … what new information did Gleick throw away his career for? I mean, we now know that the Koch brothers gave Heartland $25,000 for a health program, and that Heartland has funded a few scientists, just like Greenpeace funds a few scientists … shocking, huh? But was that worth ending his career over?

      In short, Heartland is doing what every other NGO does—gathers as much money as it can and spends it on the causes it favors. How is this news on anyone’s planet, except for the miniscule size of the Heartland sums involved?

      All the best,

      w.

    • Snapple, you asked about second deductions etc. That would be rather difficult:

      – An entity can only claim a tax deduction on a donation from income that would otherwise be taxable. I.e.:
      – An individual or a for-profit corporation can make such claims (limited in various ways.)
      – A non-profit pays no taxes and gets no deductions
      – If funds from a non-profit go to a non-profit, the recipient pays no taxes in the same way.
      – If funds from a non-profit go to a for-profit (individual or corporation), the recipient pays tax on that income. If they then donate from that income, they can avoid some of the tax, just like any other person.

      Thus, your surmise simply can’t happen. Deductions can only be applied to what would otherwise be taxable income.

      (There have been a few such loopholes in the tax law, but they are pretty rare. The only one I’ve seen personally relates to certain kinds of older retirement plans that can no longer be created: a business could put money in some plans tax-free without any tax consequence to the recipient; the recipient could pull the money out paying only a 10% penalty. Net effect: save 15.3% FICA taxes, pay 10% penalty = instant 5.3% savings just for running money through the retirement account for a day. :-D )

    • These days, teachers have to teach the kids how to determine the reliability of Internet sources, so we aren’t so gullible as Heartland imagines. We know how to look up sources and see if they are authoritative: especially if we are nearing retirement age and not fresh out of college. We know about peer-review. We understand how scholarship works.

      Here is a UPI news article that describes Heartland’s ignorant materials. their materials falsely claimed that scientists are “deeply divided” about the human role in climate change. That is a lie.

      Some 11,250 schools in Canada were sent teaching material from a Chicago think-tank that contends humans are not responsible for global warming.

      The Heartland Institute, based in Chicago, purchased the school mailing list to provide balance to environmental teaching, its science director, Jay Lehr told the Canwest News Service.

      “All the kids in our schools are being taught that climate change is a serious crisis and that we’ve got to reduce our (carbon dioxide) and they’re being taught quite falsely,” Lehr said. “We would like to educate people and basically give them the other side of the issue, so we send out materials only in hope of a little balance.”

      Among the materials the group sent was a 10-minute DVD called “Unstoppable Solar Cycles: The Real Story of Greenland,” which says scientists are “deeply divided” about “the notion that climate change is mostly the result of human activities.”
      Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/2008/05/05/Global-warming-skeptics-target-students/UPI-72571209994965/#ixzz1nU7w6iKs

    • Gareth Renowden has a post about the educational materials from the Heartland Institute. I looked a one of the pdfs and they really are pretty bad.

    • “Are you seriously claiming that a single scientist or study cannot disprove a theory that is embraced by the vast majority of scientists?”

      If there’s consensus among the majority of scientists that the new theory is better than the old theory.

  115. Thank you so much for your extraordinarily weak reasoning and defense of your request. It’s fairly easy to spot vacuum when there is no there there.

    • And speaking of “no there there”…how does SPPI manage to research climate change from inside a mailbox?

      At my school, we get our science from real scientists and real scientific organizations, not from flim-flam artists who operate tax-dodges in mail boxes.

    • From: http://wottsupwiththat.com/2011/11/27/an-open-letter-to-dr-phil-jones-of-the-uea-cru/

      Just like Anthony Watts, the first thing darling Willis Eschenbach did with the “new” batch of (years-old) Climategate e-mails was search for his own name. And he found it! Hardly surprising, after-all he was one of people who “mail bombed” the Climate Research Unit with “freedom of information” requests.

      Again just like Anthony’s response, this “new” batch of old messages is merely an opportunity to serve up warmed-over self-righteous fury. Did you know that Dr. Phil Jones didn’t instantly respond to Willis’ meandering nit-picking accusatory e-mails? Indentured servants, err… university professors, must jump to attention when a taxpayer speaks! Did you also know that Dr. Jones failed to respond in the way Willis instructed him to? Such petty defiance!

      Also, Dr. Jones no longer has his high school term papers available for public dissection. He’s hiding something!

      As noted in comments here, Willis’ open letter to “Dear Dr. Jones” about his “polite, scientific request” uses the word ‘lie’ at least twenty times and the word ‘liar’ at least twice.

      The intention of the “mail bombs” was to obstruct the scientist’s activities and to sift through their responses for anything that could be twisted to the denialist’s purpose. That game continues.

      P.S. All the highlighting of disputes and arguments between the real climate scientists “revealed” in the latest batch of old stolen e-mails kind of undermines the whole conspiracy thing. Bit of a mixed message, Willis.

    • http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/01/peer-review-a-necessary-but-not-sufficient-condition/comment-page-1/#comment-910

      In 2004 (Vol. 15, No. 3) E&E published a paper on sea level rise at Tuvalu by Willis Eschenbach, an amateur scientist and “Construction Manager” for the Taunovo Bay Resort in Fiji. The paper was entitled “Tuvalu not Experiencing Increased Sea Level Rise” which gives a general idea of the content. While most readers would assume that the paper had been peer-reviewed, on closer inspection it appears that the paper is what the Journal calls a “Viewpoint Piece”.

    • [DC: Edit and rephrased. Willis Eschenbach appeared at a Heartland conference in 2010. ]

      http://www.exxonsecrets.org/html/personfactsheet.php?id=1320

    • Willis Eschenbach

      Thanks, Thomas. I had said:

      Thanks, Thomas, but the question was directed to the man making the allegations of “ignorant materials”, not to you. I’m waiting for an answer to a specific question, one that you cannot answer, viz: exactly what documents is Snapple talking about?

      I note that despite coming back to tell me what an idiot I am, my question was still not directed at you … and you still didn’t know the answer.

      That’s the curious thing about a question to a specific person, sometimes only they can answer, no matter how much you might want to.

      Other than that, however …

      All the best,

      w.

    • Umm, Mr./Ms. Snapple, you might look up terms like ‘freelance’, ‘telecommute,’ ‘remote’ and ‘virtual’ before proceeding much further in your condemnation of an organization that may in fact be geographically dispersed. Why, I even know of organizations that maintain a post office box despite having very real offices.

      You guys have trouble staying on point, don’t you?

  116. Are you seriously claiming that a single scientist or study cannot disprove a theory that is embraced by the vast majority of scientists?

    Technically, yes, scientific theories are distinct from mathematical proofs, although nowadays some mathematical proofs do approach the technical complexities of modern scientific theories, and modern scientific theories are generally based upon a framework of many mathematical proofs, besides other forms of logical discourse and empirical evidence, and are ultimately compared to the observational evidence which constantly improves. Even our linguistic methods evolve over time, and the tools and instruments of scientific inquiry are improving and evolving all the time.

    The really clear example you are referring to is Einstein’s relativistic modifications to classical mechanics, which does not diminish the usefulness of classical mechanics at more ambient conditions.

    Even in Einstein’s time there was some advanced warning that all was not right in the classical world, but those specific warnings didn’t come from conservative or libertarian think tanks, and they weren’t published in internet newspaper articles by free market economics theorists.

  117. Two questions:
    1) Do Heartlanders wear parachutes instead of life jackets on boat trips?
    2) Should an organisation that believes NOAA stands for National Aeronautics and Atmospheric Administration be allowed near the setting of any part of a school curriculum?

    “We are working to create a Web site that will access newly available temperature data from a set of high-quality temperature stations created by the National Aeronautics and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Our new Web site will convert the data into easy-to understand graphs that can be easily found and understood by weathermen and the general interested public. The result: fewer weathermen bamboozled into reporting fake temperature records, and one fewer tool in the toolbox of global warming alarmists.”
    http://heartland.org/media-library/QPR/QPR-2012-1Q-web.pdf (page 2)

    H/T Horatio.

  118. In Catholic schools, we teach children about the peer-reviewed scientific consensus on climate change in science classes. The Heartland Institute and that sanctimonious, corrupt Attorney General Cuccinelli will have no effect on us. In fact, teachers in Catholic schools are speaking out and defending the ability of all teachers to teach what the peer-reviewed science is saying, not Heartland propaganda.

    On May 10, 2007, the Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations H.E. MSGR. Celestino Migliore, addressed the United Nations on the issue of global warming and climate change.

    MSGR. Migliore said:

    The scientific evidence for global warming and for humanity’s role in the increase of greenhouse gasses becomes ever more unimpeachable, as the [United Nations] IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 4th Assessment Report] findings are going to suggest; and such activity has a profound relevance, not just for the environment, but in ethical, economic, social and political terms as well. The consequences of climate change are being felt not only in the environment, but in the entire socio-economic system and, as seen in the findings of numerous reports already available, they will impact first and foremost the poorest and weakest who, even if they are among the least responsible for global warming, are the most vulnerable because they have limited resources or live in areas at greater risk…Many of the most vulnerable societies, already facing energy problems, rely upon agriculture, the very sector most likely to suffer from climatic shifts.”

    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/secretariat_state/2007/documents/rc_seg-st_20070510_ecosoc_en.html

    The Vatican says the same thing as the National Intelligence Council (NIC), which is made up of 16 U.S. intelligence agencies:

    “Our primary source for climate science was the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report, which we augmented with other peer-reviewed analyses and contracted research. We used the UN Panel report as our baseline because this document was reviewed and coordinated on by the US government and internationally respected by the scientific community.“
    —Dr. Thomas Fingar, former Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Analysis (June 25, 2008 before Congress)

    http://www.dni.gov/testimonies/20080625_testimony.pdf

  119. Children in Catholic schools are going to hear what Mike Mann and other real climate scientists say about climate change. We don’t have to listen to the fossil-fuel lobby and their corrupt “gubment” stooges like Virginia’s Attorney General Cuccinelli. We are listening to our great scientists and to the advice of the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences. Among their members are a number of climate scientists such as P. Crutzen and V. Ramanathan.
    We don’t get our science from Cuccinelli. His father is a lobbyist for the gas industry, and he has hijacked the high office of Attorney General on behalf of fossil-fuel interests instead of the people.

  120. FYI–DeSmogBlog is down. I wonder what’s up?

  121. In this section of Dr. Mashey’s report there is information about Heartland’s materials for children. http://www.desmogblog.com/sites/beta.desmogblog.com/files/fakeducation.Y3_0.pdf

  122. Willis writes: “Perhaps if you posted some links to examples of “Heartland’s ignorant materials” we could make up our own minds about whether or not they are convincing.”

    My point is that TEACHERS and ADMINISTRATORS (not you) find these materials unconvincing. Even Heartland concedes in what appears to be its own fundraising document that educators are “alarmists” who teach the consensus: “Heartland has tried to make material available to teachers, but has had only limited success. Principals and teachers are heavily biased toward the alarmist perspective.” [page 18 http://www.desmogblog.com/sites/beta.desmogblog.com/files/(1-15-2012)%202012%20Fundraising%20Plan.pdf%5D

    Teachers know better than to rely on fake science materials that come from a cheesy “Institute” housed in a mailbox. We rely on college professors, the EPA, NASA, NOAA, the National Academy of Sciences, etc. Teachers may not be geniuses like Mike Mann, but we don’t get our information from sketchy sites that try to fool us by changing the IPCC into the NIPCC.

  123. I note that despite coming back to tell me what an idiot I am, my question was still not directed at you … and you still didn’t know the answer.

    Here’s the deal, Willis, I live in a country where we are endowed by the our constitution with the freedom to express ourselves, and the choice to exercise that freedom, even on open moderated forums on the internet.

    You too have freedoms I presume, which since you are posting on an open forum on the internet, includes doing a minimal amount of basic research.

    Go for it. You can do it. We’re rooting for you.

  124. Willis Eschenbach

    Snapple | February 25, 2012 at 9:48 pm |

    In 2004 (Vol. 15, No. 3) E&E published a paper on sea level rise at Tuvalu by Willis Eschenbach, an amateur scientist and “Construction Manager” for the Taunovo Bay Resort in Fiji. The paper was entitled “Tuvalu not Experiencing Increased Sea Level Rise” which gives a general idea of the content. While most readers would assume that the paper had been peer-reviewed, on closer inspection it appears that the paper is what the Journal calls a “Viewpoint Piece”.

    Thanks, Snapple. The title, as many titles are, was picked by the Journal, not by me, and I was no happier about it than you are … so you’ll have to direct your ire at them.

    However, only foolish readers would assume it was peer-reviewed, since it was clearly labeled as a “Viewpoint” piece.

    I note that you have not found anything wrong with the piece itself, just where and how it was published and who wrote it, the usual AGW supporters’ ad hominem stuff that doesn’t touch the science. The paper is available here, if you are interested in discussing the science rather than trying (and failing) to attack the author.

    In addition, I wrote more on the same subject in “Floating Islands“. Finally, my claims recently have been totally vindicated. See here for details.

    My best to you,

    w.

    • Willis, I have previously been involved in tidal gauge operation, and when I choose to do a minimal amount of research, I get modern satellite data that looks like this :

      http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

      Which appears to be vastly different than the data you have presented.

      When I search for historical and modern tidal gauge data, I get this :

      http://sealevel.colorado.edu/content/tide-gauge-sea-level

      Which seems to directly contradict your claims.

      I’ve also operated facilities in remote island locations for decades, and my observational experiences seems to be in direct conflict with your claims.

      I will patiently await your explanations for these discrepancies.

    • Eschenbach claimed:

      The title, as many titles are, was picked by the Journal, not by me.

      This is rubbish. Scientific journals use the title provided by the authors.

      However, it may be true in the third or fourth rate press where he usually finds a home for his “papers”.

    • Sorry, I know this is off topic DC.

      Eschenbach seems under the mistaken impression that “Tuvalu [is] not Experiencing Increased Sea Level Rise”.

      Re Eschenbach’s challenge, “I note that you have not found anything wrong with the piece itself, just where and how it was published and who wrote it”.

      Well, several people have had to spend time and effort refuting this myth (that pseudo-scientific sites like WUWT were only too happy to promulgate) in the scientific literature (see below). There are a good many reasons why E&E is not considered reliable source of scientific information, and Eschenbach’s article in E&E is yet another reason.

      Becker et al. (2011) show otherwise,
      “Superposition of global mean sea level rise, low-frequency regional variability and vertical ground motion shows that some islands of the region suffered significant ‘total’ sea level rise (i.e., that felt by the population) during the past 60 years. This is especially the case for the Funafuti Island (Tuvalu) where the “total” rate of rise is found to be about 3 times larger than the global mean sea level rise over 1950–2009.” [More here]

      Dr. Hunter from the Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre found numerous problems with Eschenbach’s “research”. More intriguing/worrying revelations about how Eschenbach’s article got published can be found here.

      And if that is not enough, Church et al. (2006) refuted Eschenbach’s myth too,
      “Our best estimate of relative sea-level rise at Funafuti, Tuvalu is 2 ± 1 mm yr− 1 over the period 1950 to 2001. The analysis clearly indicates that sea-level in this region is rising. We expect that the continued and increasing rate of sea-level rise and any resulting increase in the frequency or intensity of extreme sea-level events will cause serious problems for the inhabitants of some of these islands during the 21st century.”

  125. Willis Eschenbach

    Snapple | February 25, 2012 at 9:34 pm |

    From: http://wottsupwiththat.com/2011/11/27/an-open-letter-to-dr-phil-jones-of-the-uea-cru/

    Just like Anthony Watts, the first thing darling Willis Eschenbach did with the “new” batch of (years-old) Climategate e-mails was search for his own name. And he found it! Hardly surprising, after-all he was one of people who “mail bombed” the Climate Research Unit with “freedom of information” requests.

    Gosh, “darling” Snapple, what a load of bollocks. I had asked Phil Jones politely for his taxpayer-funded data. I got blown off, so I filed a Freedom of Information request. It was illegally avoided by Jones.

    This was not a “mail bombing”. It was one, single solitary request that was illegally quashed. The UK Parliamentary Committee said that they would have filed charges, but the statute of limitations had run out.

    You really should try adding at least one or two facts to your serial errors, Snapple. That way at least a few folks might be fooled by your claims.

    The whole story of my interaction with Dr. Jones is here … read’em and weep.

    w.

    • “I had asked Phil Jones politely for his taxpayer-funded data.”

      Quite the sense of entitlement. Do you pay taxes in all the countries hosting GHCN sites?

      Just to confirm, were you in any way part of the vexatious FOI campaign orchestrated by CA?

  126. Willis Eschenbach

    Thomas Lee Elifritz | February 26, 2012 at 3:35 pm | Reply

    I note that despite coming back to tell me what an idiot I am, my question was still not directed at you … and you still didn’t know the answer.

    Here’s the deal, Willis, I live in a country where we are endowed by the our constitution with the freedom to express ourselves, and the choice to exercise that freedom, even on open moderated forums on the internet.

    You too have freedoms I presume, which since you are posting on an open forum on the internet, includes doing a minimal amount of basic research.

    Go for it. You can do it. We’re rooting for you.

    Great. And the question still wasn’t directed at you, and more to the point … you still don’t know the answer. Nobody does. Only Snapple can say exactly what educational materials he is referring to. You don’t know. I don’t know. Google doesn’t know.

    So yes, you have the constitutional right to jump in and try to answer for Snapple … I’m just pointing out that when you don’t know the answer, you look kind of foolish doing it …

    w.

    PS–Neither a “minimal amount of basic research” nor all the power of the internet can reveal what is in Snapple’s mind. Only he can do that, so stop the pretense that a little research on my part is all that is needed. Until Google can read minds, Snapple is the only one that can tell us exactly which educational materials he is referring to. Not me. And definitely not you.

  127. Willis Eschenbach

    Deep Climate | February 26, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    Educational material links have now been posted, if you want to defend them.

    Thanks, DC. I haven’t a clue if I will “defend” anything I haven’t seen. I want first to understand what Snapple is on about, and I still haven’t seen anything.

    Snapple posted a link to an overview that said that “Heartland mailed teaching materials to 11,250 schools in Canada”, but didn’t say what the teaching materials were. His link also said copies of JoNova’s book were sent to 14,000 school board officials … but that’s not teaching materials either, that’s just more of the books I discussed above.

    So I’m still waiting for Snapple to give me the details of what he objects to in the way of educational materials. Examples of the bad lesson plans. That kind of thing.

    Finally, I don’t get it. Al Gore puts $300 million into his publicity campaign for Cap and Trade, which was going to make him billions as a carbon trader. As part of that campaign, he pushed to get his so-called “Inconvenient Truth” into the schools, spending big bucks to do so. The film was so bad the brits said it couldn’t be shown without express disclaimers …

    But so what? Where’s the news? Everyone pushes for their own particular brand of “truth” to be taught in the schools. Greenpeace does it. WWF does it. Atheists do it. Heartland does it. Catholics do it. Gore does it. Creationists do it. That’s what everyone does, that battle is a given constant.

    So why the faux outrage over Heartland? You don’t like the message? Great. I don’t like Gore’s lies. But I’m not going to clutch my pearls and bemoan Gore’s actions. He’s just doing the same as Greenpeace and Heartland and everyone else, trying to get his message into the schools.

    The only surprising thing about Heartland (for me) was how little money they spend on any of this compared to Gore, the WWF, Greenpeace, and the rest of the pro-AGW organizations …

    So I can understand the outrage of the AGW supporters. After all, Greenpeace and Gore are spending the big money, plus the governments are putting in billions to push the AGW hypothesis, and what are they getting for it? Sweet fanny adams. Meanwhile, a rag-tag pick-up team of bloggers and renegade scientists like myself plus a few bucks from Heartland are giving them fits, enough so that Gleick throws away his career looking for the secret that he thinks will explain how we are doing it … so I can sympathize with their frustration. But there is no secret to our success, just good, transparent, honest science.

    Although I must admit, folks like Dr. Gleick help us greatly …

    In any case, DC, you run an honest site, my congratulations and appreciation.

    w.

    • Willis,

      You only impugn yourself if you claim that the anti-science Heartland Institute promotes is “just good, transparent, honest science.” You’re correct in one of your comparisons, at least, which is that there’s no difference between what Heartland does and the attempts to get creationism taught in public schools. Nice own goal.

      Taylor B

    • Willis, a few seconds of searching yields this from Heartland’s website:

      http://heartland.org/policy-documents/500-scientists-whose-research-contradicts-man-made-global-warming-scares-0?artId=21978

      which is complete nonsense,

      and this from the wayback machine found on their wiki page:

      http://web.archive.org/web/20061201133847/http://www.heartland.org/pdf/ieguide.pdf

      How hard was that? The Heartland Institute’s position is well known.

      Thank you so much for wasting everyone’s time.

    • “…Meanwhile, a rag-tag pick-up team of bloggers and renegade scientists like myself plus a few bucks from Heartland are giving them fits…”

      And there is the myth that sustains the deniers, the rag tag rebels with a rich benefactor in the background who just likes their spunk. They all grew up watching Disney films.

    • Meanwhile, a rag-tag pick-up team of bloggers and renegade scientists like myself plus a few bucks from Heartland are giving them fits

      You are no scientist. Physics has not changed. CO2 is still a GHG. Water vapor is still a positive feedback. Warming over the last 100 years is still greater than one would expect if feedbacks were not positive. Arctic sea ice volume is still plummeting.

      And, yes, you give people fits regardless. Heartland tried their best with tobacco, too (Lindzen still hasn’t given up the “smoking is nearly harmless” fight).

      You and your cohort’s *effectiveness* isn’t proof of *correctness*.

      [Portion edited – less gratuitous insults please.]

    • Willis, you say:

      Meanwhile, a rag-tag pick-up team of bloggers and renegade scientists like myself plus a few bucks from Heartland are giving them fits, enough so that Gleick throws away his career looking for the secret that he thinks will explain how we are doing it … so I can sympathize with their frustration. But there is no secret to our success, just good, transparent, honest science.

      Don’t flatter yourself. In the U.S., the scientists – the real ones – and those who understand the science enough to comprehend the risk AGW represents, are up against an implacable opposition that includes the Republican Party, media outlets like WSJ and Fox News, and a large part of corporate America, including most of the fossil fuel energy sector. Meanwhile, most of the rest of the MSM are hopelessly stuck in a “muddled middle” approach that seeks a false balance instead of exposing the duplicity of their colleagues.

      The flaws in an Inconvenient Truth (and yes there are flaws, although their extent and significance have been grossly exaggerated) are tiny, compared to films from the “skeptic” side, like the Friends of Science “Climate Catastrophe Cancelled” – or for that matter, the monumental disregard for scientific truth in any statement on climate science by James Inhofe or Rick Santorum.

      You claim that you and Anthony Watts and Steve McIntyre are producing “just good, transparent, honest science”. But there is no there there. Blog posts and think tank reports repeating the same tired points that are debunked over and over are not science, no matter how often you may bray that they are. As for “honest”, well you seem to believe that your “analyses” are worthwhile, so perhaps your non-science is “honest”. I will say this, though: It is no credit to your idols, that when shown repeatedly to be in error, that none of them ever admit it.

      And, sorry, when someone like David Wojick makes the highly misleading claim that CO2 “can not be a pollutant” because “95% of CO2 emissions are natural”, that is either a demonstration of extreme incompetence and bias, or else out-and-out dishonesty. Frankly I don’t care very much which.

      For some reason, you seem to want to go on and on here. From now on, you are on a much shorter leash. You have at least one problematic comment in moderation. I’ll deal with it and future comments on my own terms. Meanwhile read more carefully, and try to stay on topic. Thanks!

  128. As Holly states, there was a rare influx of weekend comments. As a result, an earlier abusive and libellous comment by Jay Cadbury was mistakenly approved today. The comment was probably up for about an hour. Thanks to those commentators who objected.

  129. The NIPCC books on the SPPI site are designed to confuse people because they look just like the UN IPCC books and the initials are almost the same. It’s so transparently a deception. http://www.nipccreport.org/index.html

    At the bottom of the page, copyright is given to the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change.

  130. Willis Eschenbach

    Ian Forrester | February 26, 2012 at 5:15 pm |

    Eschenbach claimed:

    The title, as many titles are, was picked by the Journal, not by me.

    This is rubbish. Scientific journals use the title provided by the authors.

    However, it may be true in the third or fourth rate press where he usually finds a home for his “papers”.

    So you call me a liar, saying my statement that the journal picked the title was “rubbish”, then you say “it may be true”? Seems kinds passive-aggressive, not to mention downright unpleasant, for you to call a man a liar then take it back …

    [DC: You are putting words in someone else’s mouth here, something of which I take a very dim view. It’s very clear that Ian means, in general, titles of articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals are supplied by the authors. He clearly was not claiming that you didn’t choose the title in your article in a non-science journal. Do that again and I will ban you, and you can go off and squawk about “censorship”. ]

    In any case, it is true, the editors picked the title. I’m not Peter Gleick, I don’t lie to achieve my goals.

    [DC: Some might say you lied when you accused someone else of “calling you a liar”. However, I think you just have very poor reading comprehension skills. Nevertheless, you might consider doing the right thing and apologizing. ]

    More to the point, I have a peer-reviewed “Communications Arising” in Nature magazine, and Nature picked their own title for that as well, so your claim is untrue.

    Have you published anything in Nature? Did they use your title?

    Regards,

    w

    • Willis, if you are sufficiently calmed down, perhaps you can tell us what your proposed titles were in each of the two cases, and perhaps more details about how those titles were changed. For instance, did Nature change your title? Or perhaps that kind of short online comment is treated differently from a regular article that appears in the journal? Obviously there is a difference between an author-supplied title being changed, and the journal simply choosing the title where none existed.

      It’s pretty hard to argue from this one data point. In most cases, for full-fledged articlesin scientific journals, I would imagine the title is subject to peer-review and editorial decisions just like any other part of the paper. I’d love to know what the original title for McLean et al (2009) was for instance.

      Perhaps some well-published scientist could step in here and comment on their experience – how often does the title get tweaked or changed altogether?

    • “Brief Communcations Arising” aren’t fully-fledged papers, they’re commentary, albeit peer-reviewed.

    • Yes, that’s why I described it as a “short online comment”. This is different from comments in other journals, which are often longer and appear in the regular print edition. articles. But as you say it is still peer-reviewed.

    • Eschenbach asked:

      Have you published anything in Nature? Did they use your title?

      Yes and yes.

      It is too bad that you, like many other deniers, have a very low grasp of English comprehension. I’m never sure whether that is real or you put on an act to get away with the absurdities that you post.

  131. Willis Eschenbach

    Thomas Lee Elifritz | February 26, 2012 at 5:14 pm |

    Willis, I have previously been involved in tidal gauge operation, and when I choose to do a minimal amount of research, I get modern satellite data that looks like this :

    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

    Which appears to be vastly different than the data you have presented.

    When I search for historical and modern tidal gauge data, I get this :

    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/content/tide-gauge-sea-level

    Which seems to directly contradict your claims.

    I’ve also operated facilities in remote island locations for decades, and my observational experiences seems to be in direct conflict with your claims.

    I will patiently await your explanations for these discrepancies.

    Thanks, Thomas. I can only say what I’ve said many times. If you object to something that I wrote, please quote exactly what it is you object to.

    At present, you seem to have piled up all my work on one side, and a link the to colorado sea level site and something you call your “observational experiences” on the other side, and asked me to provide “explanations for these discrepancies” …

    But what discrepancies? What did I say that the Colorado data disagrees with? I’ve quoted extensively from the colorado site in a variety of places, for example here, so I have no idea what “discrepancies” you are referring to.

    This is why it is so important, when you disagree with me or anyone else, that you quote what you disagree with. That way, we can be clear on both exactly what I said, and exactly what it is that you are vaguely calling “discrepancies”.

    As a friend of mine remarked, “I will patiently await your explanations for these discrepancies.”

    Many thanks,

    w.

    • Willis, after reading your CV and papers I can only suggest that you have a really bad case of island fever. You need to get to the village more often.

    • exactly what it is that you are vaguely calling “discrepancies”.

      Your primary conclusions, or should I say opinions?

      “First, there is little evidence that humans have changed the temperature of the earth in any detectable way, and there is a lot of clear evidence to show that we haven’t.”

      I suppose if you include the entire planet right down to the core that could be construed as correct. I also find serious problems with your MSL claims.

  132. Willis Eschenbach

    Deep Climate | February 27, 2012 at 1:04 am |

    … For some reason, you seem to want to go on and on here.

    My apologies, DC, I was under the impression it was a discussion, and clearly there there was no shortage of interesting issues that you and others seemed to want to bring up and discuss. People were continuing to ask me questions, and I was responding. I didn’t realize that was verboten.

    From now on, you are on a much shorter leash. You have at least one problematic comment in moderation. I’ll deal with it and future comments on my own terms. Meanwhile read more carefully, and try to stay on topic. Thanks!

    Thanks, DC, but I’ll pass on the leash, that’s for dogs, not humans. I don’t frequent blogs where posts are censored. It has been enjoyable discussing these issues with you and your readers, but when you talk about putting people on a “leash”, those folks who value freedom, transparency, and the lack of censorship simply leave.

    All the best to you and your readers, and I sincerely hope you have the courage to post this last message from me.

    w.

    • You have a tendency to wander off topic.

      My comment about the “short leash” was specifically about trying to head off off-topic discussion. As well, when you make unacceptable comments about others here, I have to step in.

      All of this will create delays, which you can avoid by staying on topic and avoiding abusive remarks, especially about other commenters. For my part, I will attempt to point out issues that may result in overly meandering side trips before they happen. (Too late for this thread though).

      For the record, I have not “censored” a single one of your comments. So please do drop the Jekyll and Hyde routine (one minute you’re congratulating me on my “honest website” and the next accusing me of “censorship”).

    • Willis Eschenbach

      Thanks, DC. “Off topic”? I have discussed very little that was not first brought up by either yourself or your commenters.

      Regarding censorship, indeed I had described your site as “honest” … and so it seemed to be, until your message where you said that from now on I was “on a much shorter leash”, and that I had a “problematic comment in moderation”.

      Perhaps thats not censorship in your world, I don’t know. Perhaps in your world you are accustomed to putting people on a short leash, or to being on a leash. I’m not.

      The only person on this wondrous planet that can put me on a leash is the woman I call “my ex-fiancee”, my dear wife of thirty plus years. No man has ever put a leash on me, although you are far from the first to try.

      Sad to say, this is one reason that Watts Up With That is wildly popular, and sites like RC and DC are not. You still think it’s OK to leash humans as if they were dogs, whereas we believe that, as the Swiss say, that “Die gedanken sind frei”, and make every effort to accomodate that…

      Finally, my thanks to you all for your patience. To remove any thought that your questions have “driven me away” or that I was afraid or unable to answer them, or such nonsense, let me stress that any of you are, of course, welcome to pursue any of your questions on any of my open threads at WUWT, where I wouldn’t consider putting a leash on you, you can ask whatever you wish, and I’ll do my best to answer them if I can …

      Regards, and regrets, I’ll be careful not to let the door hit me on the way out,

      w.

    • Oh sure, delaying your comments if I need time to respond to them properly is “censorship”. Sorry, with all due respect, I don’t accept that. In fact, I even delayed a bunch of other comments until I had time to deal with yours. So your misguided comment misrepresenting Ian Forrester forced me to “censor” everyone else.

      But if you chafe under the unacceptable bondage of comment delays, I can not stop you from leaving.

    • Sad to say, this is one reason that Watts Up With That is wildly popular, and sites like RC and DC are not. You still think it’s OK to leash humans as if they were dogs

      Watts just short-leashed William Connelly. I’ve been banned there, as have many others.

      This comment by Willis, repeated by many, is just another example of the misinformation campaign waged by climate science denialists.

    • Willis: Let’s not forget Tony’s fondness for mentioning where people work based on their IP addresses, threatening to contact their employers for posting on WUWT during work time, or banning them from posting using anonymous names, though, strangely, these seem to occur only when the viewpoints run counter to those bouncing around the echo chamber…

  133. DeepClimate “That last number especially will make it hard for Heartland to evade charges of carrying on in effect lobbying activities.”

    May I ask for your comment on the fact that a director of the Pacific Institute, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, rallied against all the conservative candidates in an article published online at Forbes (Climate BS Awards) Does the Pacific Inst. get a pass on this or will you be writing the IRS about them? (If you’ve addressed this elsewhere please just point me there.)

    • Expressing an opinion is very different from spending thousands on hosting and “educating” legislators.

      However, the sheer volume of political rhetoric from Heartland is interesting, although I wouldn’t say that is lobbying as the term is usually understood.

    • My understanding is that Heartland’s in hot water because it was caught apparently trying to lobby for a specific piece of legislation — Wisconsin Act 10. As long as they were seen only discussing certain general classes of laws (e.g. “union laws”, or “climate regulations”), they were in the clear.

      Also, Indur Goklany.

      — frank

    • drobin9999:

      May I ask for your comment on the fact that a director of the Pacific Institute, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, rallied against all the conservative candidates in an article published online at Forbes (Climate BS Awards) Does the Pacific Inst. get a pass …

      There’s nothing illegal about a director of a 501(c)(3) expressing their own political opinion. Gleick’s been a regular contributor to Forbes for some time. He gets paid for that, I’m sure. Directors of small NGOs generally aren’t paid and generally aren’t employees of the NGO.

      The 501(c)(3) prohibitions against lobbying, etc, apply to the organization itself, not what members or even employees do on their own time. The organization can’t spend money campaigning, lobbying, etc (and that includes employees *on the job*). But one doesn’t waive one’s First Amendment rights when one takes a job with an NGO, any more than one does when one joins a non-military, non-intelligence department of the US government.

  134. There’s more than enough of Cadbury for all over at Rabett Run, if you just can’t live without him.

  135. I expect the new Wikileaks leak of Stratfor documents might have stuff about spying on environment groups, etc., since it did spy on the Yes Men about the anniversary of the Bhopal disaster. I googled “startfor” and heartland and got just this article which draws some interesting parallels between the Stratfor leak and the Heartland documents leak, and asks something I hadn’t thought of: Why didn’t Gleick give the documents to Wikileaks or a similar website?

    http://www.infoworld.com/t/cringely/extremely-hacked-and-incredibly-dense-187413

    About the Yes Men:

    http://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/arts-culture/blogs/wikileaks-reveals-corporate-concern-about-yes-men-pranksters

  136. DC, you asked ‘Please give a specific example of Tides-funded “smear PR” so we can evaluate your claim.’

    Do you really want to go down this path? I sure don’t. But if you insist, I will cooperate for a bit, and cite example(s) that have been in the media.

    * Tides-funded: Tides provides significant ongoing funding to Media Matters. (Year $Amt, 990 page: 2006 $30k, p31; 2007 $15k, p28; 2008 $500k, p64; 2009 $180k, p98-99; 2010 $220k, p128-9)

    * Smear: “a strategy to discredit a person, esp. a public figure, through disparaging remarks or false accusations”

    * I googled: Media Matters smear — to see if anything concrete would show up. There’s plenty of fodder. I’m somewhat familiar with some obviously political sites and have attempted to ignore them in creating the following link list.

    “Orbitz, which is the first target of a campaign launched at DropFox.com — a new website from the liberal media watchdog group Media Matters — on Thursday also accused Media Matters of a “smear campaign.””

    (The above MM campaign is one apparent result from a MM employee memo that was previously outed: “We must take Fox News head-on in a well funded, presidential-style campaign to discredit and embarrass the network, making it illegitimate in the eyes of news consumers.” What Frisch proceeded to suggest, however, went well beyond what legitimate presidential campaigns attempt. “We should hire private investigators to look into the personal lives of Fox News anchors, hosts, reporters, prominent contributors, senior network and corporate staff,” he wrote.)

    I should be able to stop right here. That’s a direct quote from a MM employee who recommended (and clearly MM followed through) a “campaign to discredit and embarrass”, ie to smear according to the dictionary definition of “smear campaign”.)

    But I’ll give you a few more.
    * Here is another. A clear example of taking something out of context to insinuate something untrue. Disparaging or false accusations. Yup.

    * Here is a report by one of the guys accosted by MM in their attempt to question the credibility of ATF gunwalker testimony.

    * From 2007, a smear about news reporting on birth rates.

    OK, I’m sick of this. That’s a few from the first two pages of google results (over 500,000 total.) Need to go take a shower. Me, I look for integrity in leaders. It’s hard enough finding leaders with integrity. This kind of junk sickens me.

    • Re: Media Matters

      First let’s agree that the essence of a so-called “smear campaign” in this context is a “strategy to discredit a person, esp. a public figure, through … false accusations [emphasis added].

      For the the first example, Orbitz, you rely on Orbitz’s own characterization of the MM campaign as “smear”. However, in fact, the campaign involved pressure of Orbitz by the gay community, because Orbitz was a frequent advertiser on Fox News, which apparently has featured anti-gay commentary. The only way this can be construed as even a possible “smear” against Orbitz is if the motivation for the campaign (i.e. Orbitz’s use of Fox News) was in some way false. Orbitz cried “smear” without any evidence whatsoever.

      Next you quote from an email by John Frisch where he proposes various tactics against Fox News, including private investigation of Fox executives’ personal lives. I agree this would be unacceptable.

      However, there is absolutely no evidence that this was ever done – quite the opposite. In fact, this article (very critical of Media Matters) makes the point that all of Media Matters campaigns were perfectly legitimate, and there was no evidence whatsoever of such “dirty tricks” in the period since the Frisch email.

      Did MMFA actually put Frisch’s plan into action? At the moment, the answer appears to be no, at least not in terms of hiring the investigators. In the two-plus years since Frisch’s e-mail, MMFA hasn’t dropped a personal bomb on anyone from Fox. The lawsuits haven’t piled up, either. They have sent trackers to public events and bitterly criticized Fox’s reporting, but that’s a legitimate form of activism, if often tedious and tiresome.

      (The article also claims that MM was a “marionette” of the Obama administration, based on very flimsy circumstantial evidence. But even this highly biased source finds no actual wrongdoing by Media Matters.)

      NRA

      Your link defends this statement by NRA leader Wayne LaPierre.

      We raise it all through 5, 10, 15, 20 dollar contributions that Americans are willing to preserve freedom. And they’re willing to support it. But, you know, that’s what NRA is about. I mean, I always say we’re about our membership and we’re about giving voice to our membership.

      The FEC shows about $15 million contributed to the NRA Political Victory Fund, and spent in the 2007-2008 election cycle. Indeed that does appear to come mainly from small donors.

      Howver an article in Politico outlined the full NRA 2008 plan against Obama and the Democrats.

      The National Rifle Association plans to spend about $40 million on this year’s campaign, with $15 million of that devoted to portraying Barack Obama as a threat to the Second Amendment rights upheld last week by the Supreme Court. …

      This fall, NRA members will get automated phone calls, mail pieces and pre-election editions of the group’s three magazines making the case against Obama. More broadly, the group will use an independent expenditure effort to hammer the Democratic nominee via TV, radio and newspaper ads in some of about 15 battleground states in the Midwest and Mountain West.

      Clearly some of these efforts fall outside the the Victory Fund effort, either because they are outside the official election period time frame, or involve activities not covered by the election law (but still part of the NRA election strategy). Sure $15 million came through the Victory Fund. But where did the other $25 million come from?

      John Gibson

      Here the supposed “smear” is that Fox News commentator John Gibson exhorted white families to have more babies, otherwise the U.S.A. would end up more than 50% Hispanic. The defence that Gibson’s remarks were taken out of context doesn’t stand up when one examines his subsequent comments a year later.

      On his radio show yesterday, Gibson returned to the controversy, touting an Associated Press article about the “baby boomlet” in the U.S. in 2006 as vindication for his call that “the dominant, or largest, population sector, which is Caucasians” should “make more babies.” Declaring “I was right,” Gibson celebrated the increased birth rate of “non-Hispanic white women”:

      “The nearly 4.3 million births in 2006 were mostly due to a bigger population, especially a growing number of Hispanics. That group accounted for nearly one-quarter of all U.S. births.” As you can tell, Hispanics are doing the hard work of child raising. “But non-Hispanic white women and other racial and ethnic groups were” also “having more babies, too.” A big round of applause for all of you out there having those babies.

      Claiming that “people were following my advice,” Gibson exclaimed that he was “not only right,” but “prescient” and that it was time for “a John Gibson victory lap.” Listen to it:
      [flv http://video.thinkprogress.org/2008/01/GibsonBabiesRedux.320.40.flv%5D

      Gibson also complained about his critics who called him a “racist” for his May 2006 comments. “I was simply saying look what happened in Europe,” said Gibson. Immigrants “having kids like crazy” meant “England wasn’t looking so British anymore” because “Anglos” and “selfish white people weren’t going through the hard work of having babies.”

      Demonstrating a lack of self-awareness, Gibson closed the segment by asking his “drooling left wing” critics if they “still think I’m a racist.”

      I don’t know about “left-wing” critics, but I know what I would answer. I don’t understand how anyone can defend this kind of garbage, but I suppose that is your prerogative.

      Well, now I’ve had enough.

      You’ve claimed that Media Matters indulges in “smear” campaigns. But your evidence simply doesn’t hold up. As far as I’m concerned, this particular topic has exhausted itself. People can look at your claims and the rebuttals and make up their own minds on the evidence presented. Thanks!

    • DC,

      [DC: I’m going to answer you inline and then we are done on this issue, and you’ll have to let others make of the discussion what they will. Thanks!]

      1) How is it legitimate to change the dictionary definition of smear? A smear doesn’t have to be inaccurate. The definition says discredit through disparaging remarks OR false accusations. If anything, the disparaging remarks would be primary as it comes first!

      [DC: I didn’t change it. I merely pointed out that your links argued that MM made false accusations, so that was the operative part of the definition in these cases. Now you appear to be arguing they would still be smears even if MM’s accusations are true (which they are)! That’s absurd. ]

      2) I’m not surprised that you pick the examples apart. The interesting thing is that “smear” is in the eye of the beholder. And the people involved certainly felt “smeared.” If you want to claim all was well, go ahead.

      Your responses are not logical. Sorry, for a science-loving guy, the way you approach communications analysis seems lacking to me. In each case, you connect some dots, but manage to ignore the smear (“discredit a person…through disparaging remarks or false accusations”).

      You ignore Orbitz’ claim of a smear by requiring a “smear” to involve only false information. All that’s required is disparagement.

      You ignore the smear resulting from the “memo” through the defense that MM never implemented investigation into people’s private lives. That part is true, but that was only one of the recommendations. The main recommendation in that memo was absolutely implemented: MM put together an entire website devoted to disparaging Fox News! (I won’t get into the data concerning which media channels are considered left/center/right because clearly you come from one particular bent and would disagree with any data source that sees things differently.)

      [DC: There is a difference between legitimate criticism and “disparagement”. By your standard, even if DropFox.com coverage of Fox is essentially truthful and focused on the actual content (which I would argue it is), rather than ad hominem attacks or gratuitous insults, then it is still a “smear”. Sorry, I don’t buy that. Perhaps others will. ]

      You ignore the NRA smear by literally ignoring what MM said! MM made a disparaging AND false statement, by taking the sound bite out of context: “[the claim that] the NRA’s fundraising is based exclusively on small dollar donations is false.” The NRA did not make such a claim. THAT is the problem: this is putting words in their mouth by removing the context. An attempt to discredit through disparaging or inaccurate statements. It does not matter that NRA raises other large-donation funds. That was not under discussion in that interview.

      [DC: NRA made a specific claim (i.e. election spending comes exclusively from small donations). And then followed up with a more general claim. “But, you know, that’s what NRA is about. I mean, I always say we’re about our membership and we’re about giving voice to our membership.” This is a general statement about the NRA’s activities, which is patently false. As Media Matters pointed out, the NRA’s lobbying efforts are underwritten by mainly by gun companies. And even a large part of election-related spending – which Media Matters specifically pointed to – is underwritten by corporate interests. In fact, what you have here is a case where the visible part of support can be attributed to smaller donors, while the invisible part (the lion’s share) is not. ]

      You did the same thing with Gibson. He didn’t say (only) what you and MM claimed. The smear was the suggestion that he was ONLY encouraging white women to have more babies. He clearly did not say that. He was praising BOTH hispanics and ALL non-hispanics. Your media quote: “Gibson celebrated the increased birth rate of ‘non-Hispanic white women'”. The actual quote, only a few sentences later: “But non-Hispanic white women and other racial and ethnic groups were” also “having more babies, too.” He didn’t only celebrate “non-Hispanic white women.” That’s like the old one about “Judas went and hanged himself”…”Go and do likewise” :-D

      [DC: He was certainly *not* encouraging Hispanics to have more babies; they’re already doing “their share”. And his comments about the U.K. show clearly show that he is very concerned about changing ethnic and racial mix. ]

      DC, what we see here, particularly in your reply to the examples I provided, is a typical reaction to anything one might disagree with: look at the overall package, ignore the evidence that one disagrees with, find an element that resonates with one’s own view, and consider that to be vindication of the entire claim. (“Joe urged them to do X, Y and Z, all of which are nasty. They didn’t do Z… and another source didn’t find a problem…obviously there’s no problem!”)

      [DC: So you say. I maintain I probed *your* evidence and found it woefully incomplete. I looked a little deeper than your sources, obviously. ]

      DC, even Dershowitz (no friend of the right) is calling for MM to be isolated because of their extremism.

      [DC: So now Media Matters is anti-Semitic too! Sounds like a smear to me. Enough, already – I really don’t have time to go down this new rabbit hole. ]

      If you are unable to see the attempts to discredit through disparaging remarks or false accusations in these examples, please take another look.

      (FWIW, two related tidbits from my perspective on one of your primary climate “opponents”, Steve McI: (a) his politics are more like yours than HI; (b) since I’ve known him I have strongly urged him to avoid disparaging remarks and stick to the science. He doesn’t always follow my advice (who would!) but I think he’s gained a reputation for mostly doing just that.)

      [DC: That is truly absurd. McIntyre is all about disparaging remarks and false accusations.

      And with that, we are done on this. I mean it this time. Thanks!]

    • TrueSceptic

      Mr. Pete,

      This kind of junk sickens me.

      Oh really? What sickens me is someone:-

      1. Having the sheer nerve to defend an organisation such as Heartland. Do you disagree with anything they do? Have you no shame?

      2. Attempting to make it seem that Heartland is OK because others are just as bad. Even if this were true it is a poor argument and irrelevant to the topic of this thread; when it is based on false accusations, as shown by DC, it is simply despicable. Again, have you no shame?

  137. DC (and JM),
    I’m sad for a bunch of people here. I finally took the time to examine, at least at a surface level, John Mashey’s amazing investigative research report. I truly wish he had contacted me to discuss (yes, he knows how to reach me in the Real World :) )…

    While much of the material may be quite appropriate, some of the most supposedly-damning needs a second look. It is clear that nobody has bothered to either look up some of the key definitions, or ask experts about them (or else you have some really poor experts.)

    Most important: the IRS has a very specific definition for “lobbying.” See here.

    Lobbying is any attempt to influence (specific) legislation. Lobbying is permitted, to a limited extent (max $1m per organization per year, less than that for most organizations.) There are no rules prohibiting the influencing of legislator’s general opinions about any given subject, including topics that might end up in legislation of some kind. The key issue is whether specific legislation was targeted (and lots of examples are given as you read more deeply.)

    Thus, unless John has found examples of HI people specifically trying to influence a piece of legislation, then HI did no lobbying by IRS definition. If they did do lobbying, they should have reported it, and need to comply with the financial limitations with respect to how much lobbying was done.

    Now there’s an even more stringent rule, which is that most non-profits are not allowed to do political activities at all. No influence over which candidate will be elected in any election. Zero, none, nada. If HI did any of that, they need to be brought up short. And (with specific examples) the IRS claims to be ready to crack down on any organization that even performs “get out the vote” drives in a biased way. As we all know, there were lots of claims and complaints about that in recent elections, so I suspect such issues will eventually arise (although in reality not even blatant unconstitutional activity will be terminated if nobody cares to file the appropriate suits and go to the trouble of following through the legal process.) John doesn’t appear to mention this in his report, so perhaps this is a non-issue.

    I’ve discussed the topic of DAF’s elsewhere. It’s a non-issue in present law. Same with the self-dealing and board makeup topics. Both of these are incredibly hard to prove (I’ve had to deal with that on occasion!) and not gonna take you far.

    AFAIK, that leaves us with one topic: the “educational” nature of HI. Let’s assume the assertion that a lot of incorrect “educational” material was found, and assume it’s incorrectness is a matter of fact, not opinion. To prove HI is not educational requires fulfilling a much harder test, as outlined in the court case John helpfully provided. To put it most simply, one must prove that those who think the material is educational must have left an incredible gap in their material, such that “there is no reasoned development of the conclusions” — this is the crux of the issue according to the court.

    The problem with the “not educational” argument is thus that by HI’s very methods, of recruiting various scientists to speak and write at various meetings, one must convince the court that all of those speakers and writers are intellectually dishonest, that the “real” intellects are all on the side opposing HI. I.e., one must convince the court that the real science is truly settled. Problem is, that’s a PR meme, not a reality (I assume you know about “Warm Words”, the commissioned PR piece from IPPR…)

    Bottom line: I certainly understand and empathize with the idea that HI’s activities are incredibly upsetting to those who oppose HI’s perspective (I have my own hot buttons in other arenas and sometimes feel the same way. Believe me, I’m not just a “climate guy.”) However, as one with quite a bit of (unwanted) experience dealing with the vagaries of the non-profit world, I honestly think you will go nowhere with an attack against HI’s 501(c)3 status. OF COURSE you can win some kind of victory in the court of public opinion, and maybe that (or blowing off steam) is all that is called for here. I dunno.

    Again, hope that’s helpful. I probably got something wrong in what I wrote. Hope not. Hope it was worth more than what you paid for it :)

    • “I.e., one must convince the court that the real science is truly settled.”

      Not very convincing. Science is probablistic by its very nature and never “settled”, but in terms of policy decisions it can be viewed as “settled” in order to decide which policy decisions to make. It depends on whether the court would view “settled” within the context of the physical sciences, or in the context of politics and policy.

    • JB, what I was getting at was that apparently the court will blow off a “not educational” argument unless “there is no reasoned development of the conclusions.” Thus, there cannot be intelligent reasoning on the part of the proponents of whatever perspective is at stake (HI in this case.)

      It’s in that sense that I say the court needs to accept that the science is “settled.” If the other side can make any kind of convincing argument that they are intelligent, and are reasoning their way through the development of their “educational” argument… it doesn’t really matter (legally) if others don’t like what they say.

      And again, obviously the court of public opinion is a different theater of operations altogether.

    • Gavin's Pussycat

      About “reasoned development”, Bruce R. Hopkins writes (The Law of Tax-Exempt Organizations, p. 236):

      Inherent in the concept of educational is the principle that an organization is not educational in nature where it zealously propagates particular ideas or doctrines without presentation of them in any reasonably objective or balanced manner. The point is reflected in the income tax regulations that define the term educational, where it is stated ‘An organization may be educational even though it advocates a particular position or viewpoint so long as it presents a sufficiently full and fair exposition of the pertinent facts as to permit an individual or the public to form an independent opinion or conclusion.

      “Settled science” doesn’t come into it… “reasonably objective or balanced”, and “sufficiently full and fair … to form an independent opinion or conclusion” do. No way the Heartland-sponsored curriculum ideas we have seen come even close to this.

      Contrary to MrPete, and also remembering how readily in the case of Kitzmiller vs. Dover the court spotted the distinction between presented reasoning and actual reasons behind Intelligent Design, I am confident that also here the court will see the light :-)

  138. The Canadian Committee for the Advancement of Scientific Scepticism appears to be fairly new, and I don’t know anything about them, but they have looked at videos of the course taught by Tom Harris and “found 142 false, biased and misleading claims.” The report is by Dr Christopher Hassall, Ms Carley Centen, Dr Cliff Beninger, and Dr Chris Hebbern:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/feb/28/heartland-associate-climate-scepticism-ottawa-university

    http://www.scientificskepticism.ca/content/climate-change-denial-carleton-university-course-exposed-national-science-team

    http://scientificskepticism.ca/sites/default/files/pressreleases/CASSREPORTClimateChangeDenialintheClassroom.pdf

  139. “However, I think you just have very poor reading comprehension skills. Nevertheless, you might consider doing the right thing and apologizing.”

    Speaking of “very poor reading comprehension skills,” you wrote:

    “For its part, Heartland branded Gleick’s story as “unbelievable”, implicitly accusing him of having forged the document.”

    Here was the Heritage Institute’s actual comment:

    “In his statement, Gleick claims he committed this crime because he believed The Heartland Institute was preventing a ‘rational debate’ from taking place over global warming. This is unbelievable. Heartland has repeatedly asked for real debate on this important topic. Gleick himself was specifically invited to attend a Heartland event to debate global warming just days before he stole the documents. He turned down the invitation.”

    I assume you’re going eliminate your demonstrably false accusation that Heartland’s branding of Gleick’s story as “unbelievable” implicitly accused him of having forged the document?

    And you’ll apologize to the Heartland Institute due to the false charge caused by your “very poor reading comprehension skills”?

    • First here is the statement I referred to, which follows immediately after the part you quoted:

      “Gleick also claims he did not write the forged memo, but only stole the documents to confirm the content of the memo he received from an anonymous source. This too is unbelievable. Many independent commentators already have concluded the memo was most likely written by Gleick.” [Emphasis added]

      So maybe more explicit than I thought.

      Of course, since then, Joe Bast has made the accusation even more explicit, in his interview with the WSJ board.

      “Heartland Institute President Joe Bast on why global warming activist Peter Gleick stole and forged documents from his organization”

      http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com/2012/02/another-climate-scandal.html

      There’s that plural “forged documents” again.

    • Yes, you’re right. My apologies for my “poor reading comprehension skills.” (It was more that I stopped after I saw the first “unbelievable,” which is the one I remembered. Because it *is* unbelievable to me that Peter Gleick wasn’t even willing to debate people at Heartland, but instead released documents he got under false pretenses. Plus a forgery.)

    • markbahner, how would you respond, if you were a well established scientist, to a request like this?

      We usually have a keynote speaker or debate for the “entertainment” portion of the event, and I was wondering if you’d be willing to come to Chicago to debate James Taylor.

      http://fakegate.org/email-thread-inviting-peter-gleick-to-a-heartland-climate-debate/

      I would consider that request an insult.

  140. “We are done on this issue” — thanks for the discussion. Obviously, the “house” gets the last word on the debate. No prob. If you’re ever in Colorado, do stop by!

    • Drama queen.

      Your idea that a smear campaign is anything disparaging, even if true is ludicrous. Humpty-dumptyism. Clearly you don’t care about the truth, only “truthiness”.

    • Gator, your comment has nothing to do with me: go argue with the dictionary people if you don’t like the definition, because that’s where it came from.

      I won’t try to guess what arguing with the dictionary might imply about your perspective.

    • I’d prefer to move on, as noted above. I’ll look at further comments on this exchange on a case-by-case basis. Any comments I do let through will be permitted a response from MrPete. Thanks!

    • go argue with the dictionary people if you don’t like the definition

      Arguing with dictionary quoters and absolutists is so tiresome and unproductive. So I guess I’ll just have to take a pass on that, thanks.

  141. LA Times: Subterfuge vs. propaganda in global warming debate

    “Environmental advocate Peter Gleick’s admission that he obtained Heartland Institute documents, including its plan to fight global warming policies, has the wrong side answering questions.”

  142. A few have claimed that I’m “defending” HI, that to even consider such is “despicable,” and that somehow my defense is that others are “just as bad.” Clearly I’m not being understood. I do like to be understood; I’m not going to try to argue detailed points here.

    My position has nothing to do with the content of HI or any other non-profit’s message. My position is:

    1) Taking things out of context is an illogical and invalid form of attack. Non-context “truth” is a focus on “truthiness” rather than the real truth (to quote one of those who disagrees with me), and in reality taking things out of context can result in false accusations.
    2) Attacking someone based on what one wishes the law says, rather than what the law actually says, is also illogical and invalid as a form of attack.
    3) Purposely intending to discredit others, particularly through disparagement, is something I avoid personally, and encourage others to avoid. (Bringing the whole truth to light may itself bring shame to those who deserve it. I don’t need to pile on with heated words.)

    Obviously, I’m no more perfect than anyone else, but those are some of the things I hold on to. What I find interesting is that apparently many in community believe all three of the above are just fine, at least when applied to opponents (perceived or real.)

    FWIW, as far as I know I have not expressed an opinion about HI’s activities or perspective. I have attempted to make remarks that are independent of perspective. (Most of my work these days is at that level: developing principles that “work” no matter what perspective is in play.)

    • FWIW, I don’t think MrPete’s here to “defend” Heartland. But I still don’t agree with MrPete’s legal interpretations ;)

  143. Columbia Journalism Review has a good piece on the legal ins-and-outs of Peter Gkeick’s actions, with input from lawyers.

    Heartland, Gleick, and Media Law

  144. Having a discussion at James and Jules site about the actions of Mosher at the time. Wondering if anyone following it had similar thoughts.

    http://julesandjames.blogspot.com/2012/02/his-transgression-cannot-be-condoned.html

    • Well, I suppose you can make a case that Mosher knew more than he let on. But so what? The real question left to be answered is whether Gleick forged the strategy memo or got it in the mail (as he claimed).

      I find the stylographic analyses on both sides ludicrous, but there is nothing on the record to support the idea that Gleick must have had the memo before phishing Heartland. And the fact remains that Gleick should be able to easily present some evidence to support his story.

      When did he get the memo? Did he show it to anyone or talk about it? What about the hard copy and envelope (presumably with post mark)?

      The longer these questions remain unanswered, the more untenable Gleick’s position on this point becomes. I would hope that the Pacific Institute independent investigation would get to the bottom of this sooner rather than later.

    • KingOchaos says there: “Obviously if he had been caught, by being informed on, or having google surrender the IP of the person who accessed the account.”

      Nope. It’s easy-peasy to check the location of an email sender. Google it. All you need is in the first lines of the properties of the email (usually available by a right click on the email where you’ll see an IP address) and you can go online and use a readily available IP tracker, of which there are many, to trace the sender’s location most of the time. So, if Tom sends an email from California claiming to be Bill from Illinois, you can soon find out enough to get the Spidey senses tingling, and even get a map or satellite view of the locality. No IT training necessary, and an admin staffer could do it within minutes.

    • Yes, I’ve been saying that since the beginning The onus is on Gleick to defend himself. Even though the burden is on the prosecution, when it rests and the defense does nothing, the verdict is guilty. But that certainly shouldn’t stop us from asking questions on how certain people were so sure about Gleick. That may give us some incite into why Heartland is so interested in pinning this on Gleick without good evidence, or withholding evidence.

      The guilty verdict still forces us to believe that Gleick would take another extraordinary step and write up a fake memo and then insert himself into it. That’s hard for me to just swallow without further evidence. It takes less for me to believe someone saw his name and mailed to him.

    • Couldn’t agree more, and myself and Sphaerica pointed out the similarities with another’s writings (you know who) in that thread at Lucia’s where Mosher threw Gleick into the fish tank, a while before Otto or Laden did their thing with Watts’s new toy. Why would Gleick concoct a memo which he knew would be declared a fake? Makes no sense. I mean, it would be such an act of abject stupidity and self-sabotage it defies any serious consideration. But I’m tired of pointing that out when so many want to turn an efficient glider into a many-parts helicopter. It’ll all come out in the wash, and I don’t think we’ve even seen the start of this yet.

    • Sure Joe Bast uses the “Oxford comma” just like Gleick (see the Alleged Heartland Documents on fundraising and budget). And I don’t claim to be 100% certain of what happened here.

      But in situations like this, we should be very careful to distinguish between what is most likely and what we’d most like.

  145. John Mashey

    RE: Kochs under every tree
    I’ve probably spent more time rummaging through Form 990s than most and looking for patterns.

    1) If you look at recent 990s, some may show Koch presence or not, so one should *not* expect to find them under every tree.

    2) However, if you go further back, you may find that they helped plant the seeds, water them early, but turn over the further gardening to others,
    like Searle, Seid, L&H Bradley, etc, etc. Note that Padden was involved with the original CATO, so Heartland is an offshoot.

    3) Likewise, Exxon foundation helped a lot in the late 1990s, early 2000s and then faded into the non-findable corporate background. Why not? Save the money for lobbying, especially when foundations will pay.

    Anyway: there is a clear lesson: be very careful in assuming who is paying for what, when.

  146. Educational material links have now been posted, if you want to defend them.

  147. DC, you’re getting too many comments now :), I missed Jay’s comment in the crowd until today.

  148. Gavin's Pussycat

    Yes, and I wrote an acerbic comment that would have been worth saving for posterity… you don’t know how true your statement is that you ‘missed’ Dr Jay’s comment :-)

  149. I thought that I had merely not seen the comment before because of its date, but DC’s explanation that it was approved briefly yesterday by accident clears that up. I can’t remember if I saw your acerbic comment, GP, but I’m sure you’ll be able to use it again at some point.

  150. No one saw the answering comments, except me. When I saw them I realized I had messed up, and needed to put it right. So thanks to both of you. And, yes, I’m saving all three comments.