Rick Kiser’s letter to the editor on Dec. 15 suggests that global warming is a hoax. In challenging recent reports, he cites the Heartland Institute’s viewpoint on the topic.
The Heartland Institute is a libertarian (think Koch Brothers), right-wing, think tank whose chief purpose is defending and promoting corporate interests. It led the denialist campaign defending tobacco in the 1990s.
It then began defending the dirty energy industry. Money? ExxonMobil alone contributed $736,500 between 1998 and 2005 to it.
The threat was known in the 1980s as James Baker, advisor to G. H. Bush, stated, “We can probably not afford to wait until all of the uncertainties about global climate change have been resolved.”
But industry’s objective was to create doubt as Frank Lund advised Bush/Cheney, “Should the public come to believe issues are settled, their views about global warming will change accordingly. Therefore you need to continue to make the issue of scientific uncertainty a primary issue.”
Their success is revealed in the inaction resulting in the dire warnings of IPCC and National Climate Assessment whose contributors, (sorry Mr. Kiser) volunteer to inform the public. This subversive, self-serving campaign is carefully documented in the books “Climate Cover Up” and “Merchants of Doubt” (also a film). Meanwhile, promoters of global warming being a scientific, Chinese, Al Gore or George Soros conspiracy play into this scheme while demonstrating their ignorance of the scientific process, the scientific community and the power of money in politics.
The defeat of Initiative 1631 has further established the efficacy of the denialist machine and power of money. Was the industry’s chief goal altruistic?
Washington citizens defeated I-1631 encouraged by a $31 million dollar media blitz. What folks don’t realize is that I-1631 was a prayer. It was a hail Mary pass for our future. Now, having rejected another opportunity to change course, we are entitled to reap the whirlwind while the industry reaps more profit. Hang on. It is going to be a wild ride.