One of the trite character-assassination-in-place-of-argument tropes in the climate debate is that skeptics are paid liars with high bank balances and low morals. It appears most recently in AOC’s “Message from the Future”. But a new report from the Institute for Energy Research reveals what we all knew anyway: the big green is on the side of Big Green. In the U.S. alone foundations hand out amounts in the billions of dollars to climate alarmists while skeptics struggle to raise tens of millions. And governments pour even larger sums into one-sided research through universities and stand-alone “independent” initiatives like Canada’s new multi-million-dollar Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration “representing more than 15 diverse and reputable organizations” that all mysteriously share the view of those funding them.
Of course money can’t buy you brains any more than it can buy you friends. (Although as the late Spike Milligan observed, it can at least buy you a better class of enemy.) Being well-funded doesn’t make alarmists wrong, or wicked. But to call skeptics wicked for being well-funded when they aren’t is, how shall we put it, wrong and wicked.
It’s so tempting to play the whiny victim card. As David Leonhardt of the New York Times just put it with sour and surly paranoia, “The politics of climate-change can sometimes feel unwinnable. The oil and coal industries spend large sums of money to spread falsehoods. The leadership of the Republican Party echoes those falsehoods.” It would be bad enough if he accused them of spreading honest error with vast sums of money. But no. He calls them liars. And yet he is the one who is lying, or negligent to the point of dishonesty because there’s far more money in alarmism and he’s too smart and educated not to be able to find it out.
Media giants like the New York Times and the Associated Press pour money into telling us everything that happens, might happen, or didn’t happen is proof of a man-made climate crisis. And then there’s government.
By one estimate the Obama administration spent $16 billion a year on climate science, virtually all to prove it was a real man-made crisis. Which is also the IPCC’s explicit mandate. Find me $16 million a year to research the alternative. And if you doubt that he who pays the piper calls the tune, look what happens to someone at a state-funded university who challenges the politically imposed orthodoxy, from Judith Curry in the U.S. to Peter Ridd in Australia.
Call us wrong. Call us stupid. But don’t call us venal, or so stupid that if we’re willing to shill for the highest bidder we don’t know who it is.
Seriously. If anyone knows where these rich corporations and sinister merchants of death are who fund climate skepticism lavishly, give us their addresses. We already think what we think. But we could sure use the money. Failing that, visit our website and make a small pledge because our adversaries have deeeeeep pockets filled in large measure, ironically, with your money raised through taxes.