Democrat AG Targets 90 Conservative Groups in Climate Change Racketeering Suit, by Lachlan Markay.
The attorney general of the U.S. Virgin Islands is targeting dozens of conservative and libertarian organizations in a racketeering lawsuit against climate change skeptics that has been widely described as an effort to silence political opponents.
In a subpoena issued in March, the office of USVI attorney general Claude Walker demanded from Exxon Mobil copies of communications between the oil company and 90 different political and policy organizations “and any other organizations engaged in research or advocacy concerning Climate Change or policies.”
The subpoena was part of a national, coordinated legal campaign by state attorneys general and left-wing advocacy groups to use the legal system against companies and organizations that disagree with and advocate against Democratic policies to address global climate change.
Climate change is not like other political issues because there actually is a right and a wrong answer, and it will eventually be proved to virtually everyone’s satisfaction. Other political issues, like whether it is better to have communism or capitalism, are open to interpretation and people can argue the toss because they are not cut-and-dried issues but contain trade-offs and preferences. (Though that particular issue has been pretty much closed since the Soviet Union gave up — though that didn’t stop Venezuela moving strongly in that direction, to the applause of some Australian Lefties.)
As it happens, the notion that carbon dioxide is the main cause of the global warming observed over the last century is simply due to faulty, simplistic modeling that stretches back to the first climate sensitivity model in 1896. There are a series of technical errors behind the idea, but it has grown so big and hard-to-correct for political reasons. Eventually (maybe quite soon, 2017?) global temperatures will start falling, and the climate establishment will be finally forced to either admit they were wrong or seriously cheat on the temperature data.
In the meantime, the political forces that drove this mess are hard at work exploiting the belief that man’s emission caused most of the global warming. Notice how it is now party-political — Democrats are using the power of the state, with all its implied violence, to shut down conservatives and libertarians.
This latest episode of silencing dissenters is of course a travesty of justice and inimical to the Enlightenment and democracy. We live in a time of political decay. It’s acts like this that make society stupider and poorer, because valuable discussion is closed down. By directing scientific inquiry only to one politically-acceptable conclusion, the world has had to wait until sufficiently-jacked-off outsiders solved the modelling error for them, despite their pressure. Shame on them.
One target of the subpoena, the libertarian Competitive Enterprise Institute, has already publicly responded to Walker. Its attorney called the attorney general’s subpoena “a blatant attempt to intimidate and harass an organization for advancing views that you oppose.”
“Your demand on CEI is offensive, it is un-American, it is unlawful, and it will not stand,” wrote Andrew M. Grossman, an attorney with the Washington firm BakerHostetler. “You can either withdraw it or expect to fight.”
Hans von Spakovsky, a former Federal Election Commissioner and a senior legal fellow at Heritage, called the subpoena “a truly outrageous abuse of [the attorney general’s] authority and a misuse of the law.”
“This investigation is intended to silence and chill any opposition,” von Spakovsky wrote. “It is disgraceful and contemptible behavior by public officials who are willing to exploit their power to achieve ideological ends.