Notes on the faked Heartland document

UPDATE: there’s even more evidence that the document was faked. The Koch Foundation and The Atlantic weighs in in update 3 below.

As a follow up to the post Notes on the Heartland Leak, I’ve prepared some notes on the PDF document “2012 Climate Strategy” that Heartland says in their press release is a fake among the other documents distributed. They say specifically that:

One document, titled “Confidential Memo: 2012 Heartland Climate Strategy,” is a total fake apparently intended to defame and discredit The Heartland Institute. It was not written by anyone associated with The Heartland Institute. It does not express Heartland’s goals, plans, or tactics. It contains several obvious and gross misstatements of fact.

Here is a screencap of the top part of that document, which was printed, and then scanned, unlike any of the other documents which were direct to PDF from word processing programs:

There’s been a lot of scrutiny in comments on various blogs, and I’ve given some scrutiny to the document as well, comparing it with other documents in the set. I’m in agreement that this is a fake, here is why:

1. It is the only document in the set that appears to have been scanned rather than produced by a PDF document publisher such as Adobe Distiller 8.0 or 8.1 which were both in document properties on other documents. For example compare the two document properties side by side. I’ve placed arrows marking distinct differences:

2. The metadata in document properties in the document said to be faked have been sanitized. Why cover tracks? This could possibly be due to the leaker not knowing how to remove other metadata in standard PDF, but knows if he/she scans it on an Epson flatbed scanner and saves it to the scanner’s memory stick/flash drive port, there will be no personally identifiable information.

3. One of the first questions I asked Joe Bast of Heartland when I saw this printed then scanned document was “do you not shred your trash”?  His response was, “there’s no need, all the communications are done electronically by email”. That suggests a paper copy never existed in the Heartland office. The fact that none of the documents contains any personal signatures lends credence to this.

4. It doesn’t read like a strategy document, as it mixes strategy with operational details and commentary.

5. It gets the operational details ( budget) wrong – especially the points about my project, rounding up to $90,000 from a very specific budget number of $88,000. This suggests trying to inflate the number for a purpose. There’s no evidence of rounding budget numbers in any other document in the set.

6. Key sentences are rather clumsily written and some make no sense. This contrasts with purposeful language in the other documents. This one sentence in particular has gotten a lot of attention:

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 can’t imagine pitching “…dissuading teachers from teaching science.” to a board of directors at a meeting. It is a sure recipe for a public relations nightmare.

7. There are punctuation errors throughout it, suggesting it is not a professional document. There’s an overuse of commas for example. The formatting is different than other documents in the set, with a left justified title. All other Heartland documents have a center justified title. Fonts for titles don’t match either. The “2012 Climate Strategy” document has a different font.

8. The “2012 Climate Strategy” is the purported “smoking gun” that provides commentary and context missing from the other factual documents. Without this framing document, the other documents and what they contain, are rather bland. Without it, there’s not much red meat to dangle in front of people that would tear into it.

9. The document misrepresents the positions of Andrew Revkin and Dr. Judith Curry. This seems to come from a point of speculation, not from a point of certainty.

10. Most of the documents were prepared by Joe Bast, listed as author “jbast” in the PDF document metadata and done around 8AM on Monday, January 16th. One document, “Board Directory 01-18-12_0.pdf” has an author “ZMcElrath” ( a Heartland employee according to the Budget document) and was created on Wednesday January 25th at 1:04PM, within working hours just like all the others.

The document in question the “2012 Climate Strategy” has a timestamp of Monday, Feb 13th, at 12:41PM, just one day before “DeSmog Blog” released the documents on their website. The timeline disparity doesn’t make a lot of sense for documents that were supposedly mailed to a person posing as a board member (according to an alleged email snippet on Keith Kloor’s website) to trick someone at Heartland to email them the package of documents. Here it is:

Dear Friends (15 of you):

In the interest of transparency, I think you should see these files from the Heartland Institute. Look especially at the 2012 fundraising and budget documents, the information about donors, and compare to the 2010 990 tax form. But other things might also interest or intrigue you. This is all I have. And this email account will be removed after I send.

It would have had to have been sent sometime between 12:41PM Chicago time on Monday Feb13th and Tuesday Feb 14th 16:39 (Pacific Time) when the first comment appeared on DeSmog Blogs first post on the issue. According to David Appell’s blog, Keith Kloor says it was sent yesterday (Feb 14th), which is after the creation date for the “2012 Climate Strategy” memo of “2/13/2012 12:41:52 PM. Which means DeSmog blog had the documents only a short time.

Appell also writes: Desmogblog Had Leaked Docs For Only an Hour

I guess I’m behind on this, because this afternoon Politico reported that Desmogblog received the documents yesterday (2/14) and “The blog posted them about an hour later without contacting the Heartland Institute for confirmation.”

http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=5826D160-4705-4D72-A0BB-44C8C2EDA7DC

So they received them after the suspicious memo was scanned (according to its metadata). Which doesn’t prove its not fake, but at least the timeline isn’t inconsistent.

Appell also thinks the document makeup is suspicious and does his own metadata analysis.

Summary:

All the above evidence, plus Heartland’s statement saying it is a fake, taken in total suggest strongly that the “2012 Climate Strategy” document is a fake. From my perspective, it is almost if the person(s) looking at these said “we need more to get attention” and decided to create this document as the “red meat” needed to incite a response.

Indeed, the ploy worked, as there are now  216 instances (as of this writing) of this document title “Confidential Memo: 2012 Heartland Climate Strategy” on Google at various news outlets and websites.

The question to ask then is this: who benefits the most from the existence of such a document? A disgruntled employee? Hardly. Such things often backfire. And, who would know best how to craft such a document for maximum public impact? I think the answers are there, but the question needs to be asked. From what I hear, Heartland is going for criminal prosecution and/or civil liabilities on this one. They certainly have a case.

All of those news outlets and bloggers that regurgitated this document and the claims in it without checking for the veracity of it first are going to have some defending to do to. The Guardian seems particularly vulnerable for their “publish first, ask questions later” tactic.

UPDATE: At Lucia’s Blackboard, commenter Duke C. have been delving into the faked memo. What he has found is quite interesting:

Duke C. (Comment #89877)

February 15th, 2012 at 9:55 pm

Steve McIntyre (Comment #89815)

February 15th, 2012 at 4:31 pm

If you look at the Document Properties of the various Heartland documents, the Confidential Memo has a date of Feb 13, 2012 whereas the other documents date from January. In addition, the agenda source (for example) refers to a p: drive and an origin in a *.wpd document, while the Confidential Memo does not have these features.

The Confidential Strategy Memo and the Form 990 were both scanned, possibly from the same source. There are similarities in the Metadata. Both were created under PDF Version 1.5, with the same Extensible Metadata Platform Core:

xmlns:x=”adobe:ns:meta/” x:xmptk=”Adobe XMP Core 5.2-c001 63.139439, 2010/09/27-13:37:26

The other 6 pdfs show a different core version:

xmlns:x=”adobe:ns:meta/” x:xmptk=”Adobe XMP Core 4.0-c316 44.253921, Sun Oct 01 2006 17:14:39

The Form 990 linked at DeSmog shows August 02, 2011 as the last modified date. The 990 linked at Heartlandinstitute.org shows December 06, 2011. Scanning artifacts indicate that both are identical.

All of this is, of course, circumstantial evidence. but I’m not ready to rule out that the Strategy memo wasn’t scanned at Heartland.

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

Duke C. (Comment #89887)

February 15th, 2012 at 11:03 pm

More on the Strategy memo-

EPSON Scan

2012-02-13T12:41:52-08:00

2012-02-13T12:41:52-08:00

2012-02-13T12:41:52-08:00

Hmmm……

That’s Pacific Standard Time, if I’m reading it right.

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

Duke C. (Comment #89888)

February 15th, 2012 at 11:07 pm

Oops. with html tags removed:

rdf:Description rdf:about=””

xmlns:pdf=”http://ns.adobe.com/pdf/1.3/”

pdf:Producer EPSON Scan /pdf:Producer

/rdf:Description

rdf:Description rdf:about=””

xmlns:xmp=”http://ns.adobe.com/xap/1.0/”

xmp:ModifyDate 2012-02-13T12:41:52-08:00 /xmp:ModifyDate

xmp:CreateDate 2012-02-13T12:41:52-08:00 /xmp:CreateDate

xmp:MetadataDate 2012-02-13T12:41:52-08:00 /xmp:MetadataDate

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

According to the “contact” page at Heartland, they have no west coast offices:

The Heartland Institute

One South Wacker Drive #2740

Chicago, Illinois 60606

312/377-4000

map

Telephone Phone: 312/377-4000

Fax: 312/377-5000

Other offices 1728 Connecticut Avenue NW #2B

Washington, DC 20009

Phone: 202/525-5717

AdministratorP.O. Box 10330

Tallahassee, FL 32302

Christian R. Camara3900 Pearce Road

Austin, TX 78730

Julie DrennerP.O. Box 361195

Columbus, Ohio 43236

Alan Smith

Now who do we know on the West Coast in the Pacific Time Zone? One major player in this mix is in the Pacific Time Zone according to their “contact” page.

In the Heartland budget document “(1-15-2012) 2012 Heartland Budget.pdf ” in section 3, there’s also reference made to an employee that was let go that works out of the west coast home office. These are places to start asking questions.

UPDATE2: It seems Andrew Revkin, one of the first to publicly post about the documents without checking the veracity first, now agrees to the possibility of a fake (h/t A.Scott) :

“looking back, it could well be something that was created as a way to assemble the core points in the batch of related docs.”

Source: http://blog.heartland.org/2012/02/andrew-revkin-finds-journalism-religion-after-posting-fraudulent-document/

UPDATE3: 11:15AM 2/16/12 Megan McArdle at the Atlantic has even more evidence it is a fake. (h/t Bart)

It seems that the Koch Brothers had nothing to do with climate donations to Heartland, but they confirm they did donate for health care campaigns. Koch confirms in a press release that their contribution was for health care, not global warming:

The [Koch] Foundation gave just $25,000 to Heartland in 2011 (the only such donation to that organization in more than 10 years) and that funding was specifically directed to a healthcare research program, and not climate change research, as was erroneously reported.

McArdle writes:

Unless there’s an explanation I’m missing, that seems to clinch it–why would health care donations show up in their climate strategy report?  Unless of course, it was written by someone who doesn’t know anything about facts of the donation, but does know that the Kochs make great copy.

Advertisements

  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of

Shall we start a fund to send Leo Hickman to some proper journalism classes?

juanslayton

I believe this part is from the smogger, not the cover e-mail:
It both corroborates and is corroborated by the leaked Heartland documents, which reinforce Mashey’s conclusion that Heartland is a for-profit public relations and lobbying firm that is operating with non-profit status by misrepresenting the nature of its activities in its own tax filings.
REPLY: Yes correct, excess of the pasted text fixed, thanks, Anthony

Maurizio Morabito (omnologos) said @ February 15, 2012 at 11:47 pm

Shall we start a fund to send Leo Hickman to some proper journalism classes?

The Git commenced Journalism at UTas back in 2004 and lasted all of two lectures and one tutorial. It was, being kind, useless. The only classes where critical thinking was taught and practiced were Philosophy, History and Geology.

Anthony, your points:

6. Key sentences are rather clumsily written and some make no sense.
7. There are punctuation errors throughout it, suggesting it is not a professional document. There’s an overuse of commas for example. The formatting is different than other documents in the set,

Were the giveaways for me. It’s very amateurish.

Richard111

I really, really would like to see the Guardian humbled.

sHx

I think there is pretty much a consensus among climate skeptics that the term climate denialist/denier is used on purpose to draw parallels between skeptics and the Holocaust deniers.
Now we have a document which is so fraudulent it instantly brings to mind The Protocols of Elders of Zion forgery.
What is worse is that the climate doomsday cult and its followers expect people to believe the narrative is true even if the document itself is forged.
This is like saying “just because the protocols proved to be forgery doesn’t mean Jews aren’t out to get you”.
The hypocrisy, the duplicity, the ignorance, the gullibility, the hard-headedness, the closed-mindedness and the malevolence of the CAGW True Believer would put any anti-semite to shame.

Also:

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.

Anyone who knows David Wojick’s writing would immediately know that there is no way he’d be involved in anything as silly as this.

Hari Seldon

Wonder if the UK Guardian will publish this analysis ?

Bob Koss

Duke C. over at Lucia’s seems to have found a time stamp on the strategy memo showing a Pacific coast creation time for the scan. Comments 89887-89888.
Isn’t Heartland only located in D. C. and Chicago?

Alan Wilkinson

I’m presuming this “memo” was not signed? It is inconceivable such a document would be circulated to a Board without an author, particularly since it uses the first person pronoun. However, it is equally unlikely that a forger would put a name on it since that could not only immediately reveal it as a fake but open those publicising it to defamation suits.
This also supports the fake claim.

Konrad

In recent news – – –
A bungling Iranian bomber blew off his own legs when he hurled a grenade at Thai police outside a Bangkok school – which bounced off a tree and then exploded at his feet.
A bungling climate alarmist tried to spice up boring stolen documents from the Heartland Institute, but had their amateurish fake exposed, blowing off the story’s legs.
– – –
I don’t think the fools involved in this sordid affair are going to get a big thank you from their former friends at the Biased Broadcasting Cabal or the Leftardian.

Sandy

James Delingpole will almost certainly run with this. Supports his Watermelons book too.
Should be most entertaining.

JJ

This from Heartland:
How did this happen? 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
Indicates that they know exactly when the theft occured. The time stamp on the email from the duped staffer to the theif would establish that. If that time is prior to 12:41PM on Feb 13, then the Strategy document clearly didn’t originate at Heartland.
Also, check the PDF modified dates. They are all Feb 14, 2012. Span 3 hours from 11 am to 2 pm. What was changed vs. the originals as recieved?

cb

Is it not highly amusing that this mysterious Defender of the book-cookers, himself cooked the books? A liar telling lies in order to defend the Liars of Mann-kind? But this is of secondary importance: obviously the truth would have come out very quickly.
Do not let the TRUE objective of all this be lost from view: firstly to try and strip the Heartland Institute itself of its financial backers, and secondarily but most importantly to make people more wary to back ANY similar group. This would be classical if the Defender where the CIA – there is a term for this exact thing, but I cannot recall it at the moment. In any case, all else is secondary to this purpose – the clear and obvious Goal, of this as-yet unidentified Defender of the Manns.
I know this is all obvious, but I have yet to see this issue raised to the centrality it requires.

CodeTech

It’s as authentic as the document purporting to show G. W. Bush shirked his Vietnam obligations,
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/bush-papers-were-faked-admits-cbs-6161169.html
and 0bama’s birth certificate (yeah, whatever, the one produced was a hastily re-issued copy).
and 0bama’s Nobel. Wait, that was authentic. But… as useless as (insert simile here)
Pretty much anyone can see the obvious things pointed out here (ie. different fonts, different style, different everything), and the “smoking gun” of “dissuading teachers from teaching science” is something that only exists in the warmists wettest of wet dreams.
“WE” (ie. skeptics) actually WANT teachers to teach Science. Science is something completely different from anything to do with AGW doctrine, so fittingly championed by a divinity school dropout and his favorite hockey team.
Science teaches us to question things, to adjust a hypothesis when observation no longer matches, that correlation is NOT causation, that an average is supposed to include current data, not just ideal data from some arbitrarily defined past dataset, that messing with real-world data to create a predetermined result is wrong, that adjusting historical data to match a hypothesis is criminal, and on and on.

It will be interesting to see how long it takes for this to unwind. It doesn’t feel like it will have a long shelf life.
Anthony have you setup a dedicated pay-pal donation for the funding of this project yet? I believe that quit a few people would like to donate to help “Free The Graphics”. Just a Thought.
Good Luck, and know that faked documents vs real ones, is noticeable to the average person once they get a chance to see the story develop.

Alan Wilkinson

Question: are there any facts in the faked memo which could not have been extracted from the other documents or otherwise publicly known?

Is it just me or do all the letters written by warmists have poor sentence structure, grammar and punctuation?

Ian_UK

“The ”2012 Climate Strategy” is the purported “smoking gun” that provides commentary and context missing from the other factual documents.” – just like the “45 minutes” dossier issued by the Labour government here in the UK. They never learn. The poor writing also suggests a younger person, a result of the drop in educational standards in recent years.

Sandy on February 16, 2012 at 12:24 am said:
James Delingpole will almost certainly run with this. Supports his Watermelons book too.
Should be most entertaining.
————
Prepare for a shock, he’s endorsing Obama instead :
http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100137740/why-im-rooting-for-barack-obama/

Latimer Alder

I agree that this is a fake. Leaving aside the technical stuff, it just doesn’t have the ‘look and feel’ that such a real document on such a topic would have, The other exhibits show that Heartland’s internal workings are pretty professional, that they have a house style, that they are used to being exact in their work and run their office in an organised way.
It is (to me at least) inonceivable that a senior staff member would write such an important document (for if real it would be the strategic plan) for internal consumption in a style so far removed from the norm.
But we must assume that the faker believed that their rather inept attempt at a forgery would be taken at face value. What can this tell us about his/her identity?
1. They are not at all familiar with the ways, habits and mindset of senior staff in any institution. The ‘ambience’ is wrong, the phrasing is wrong, the general tone of the document is wrong for the way those guys work. Compare and contrast the fake with the thoroughly researched and argued real ‘Fundraising Plan’ to see the difference.
2. We can rule out any of the established pro-AGW groups like Greenpeace or WWF or those sort of guys. They may be very misguided, but they are not naive. They would do a professional job that would last more than 24 hours of scrutiny.
3. There is (I think) no factual detail in the fake that cannot be gleaned from the other released documents. No further supporting detail, no ‘mood music’. It is, in essence, just a rehash of the other documents with a supposedly disobliging commentary added to it. We can conclude that this is unlikely to come from a Heartland insider or disgruntled employee – unless at a very junior level like security staff, cleaner or janitor.
4. The faker is familiar with the ‘Climate Wars’. And some of the phrasing betrays their own position ‘We pay to undermine the official UN IPCC reports’ is a tell. As is ‘other contributions….from corporations whose interests are threatened by climate policies’. And of course ‘two key points that are effective at dissuading teachers from teaching science’.
I’d guess (no surprises here) that the faker is to the far side of the pro green, anti corporation side of the debate.
5. The wording and phrasing seems to be (though wrong for the supposed purpose) consistent throughout. This is not a document that has had multiple editors, or at least had had one overriding editor to impose the uniform style. But my feeling is that it was done by one individual
6. The faker must have assumed that he would get away with it – that his fake would be accepted. He has a high regard for his own abilities, and probably little regard for those of others.
7. This was an opportunistic fake, not a planned scam. Once he/she had obtained the real Heartland documents and found them to be thoroughly dull, they needed something to spice their adventure up a bit. And this is the result. I doubt that they spent more than a few hours constructing it, and the timeline shows that they were keen to get rid of the evidence asap. Not for them the patience of a two-year wait for Climategate 2.
My best guess is that this was done by a bright individual working alone, with no actual experience in large institutions. A ‘greenie’ with a computer and a scanner. Not an insider. One with a high regard for himself, but not a mastermind planning their every move ten years ahead.
I’ll leave others to consider what ‘profile’ this may fit, but my personal view is tending to the spotty youth working away alone in his bedroom. Or a disgruntled middle-aged loner.
Time will tell.

Alexander L.

Heartland Institute Budget for 2013.
Volunteer Donations: 2.1 million.
Fund-Raising Donations: 3.7 million.
Payments from news outlets after winning in courts: 92.4 million.

MarcH

Just wondering if the scanned image contains any incriminating information. Perhaps a lettermark?
some image processing software might come in handy.

A rational person would endorse someone only after they knew who the opponent was. Very strange, coming ftom Delingpole.

Scarface

Hi Anthony,
Since the Heartland Institute emailed the documents to the false email-account, please try the HI to forward that email to you so you can compare the original documents with the published ones. The truth will come out very quickly!

Aynsley Kellow

Pompous Git: There are a few of us at UTas who celebrate scepticism. 🙂

Sandy

“Prepare for a shock, he’s endorsing Obama instead :”
Seen why?
We changed nothing with a ‘Conservative’ government, different faces at the trough is all.

With climategate mails the assumption was they were fake until proven real. Tom fuller’s position on nov 18th was that they were fake until CRU admited they were real.
We cant really say fake or not fake. The question is do we adopt the same rules for heartland as we did when we got the CRU mails.
So, moshpit says, fake until proven real. fake until heartland owns up to it.

The alternative explanation, Latimer, is that the fake is a quick and dirty job put together (eg within an hour) by somebody who knew that warmists would believe the thing anyways, and the scandal would occupy hundreds of web sites before being shown as a fake. Also, the net being the net, the fake news will never go away really.

pat

the monies involved are so puny in the CAGW scheme of things, it’s a bit farcical the Alarmist MSM can work themselves into such a lather. you would think they’d be too busy writing screeds of abuse over Obama giving loan guarantees for the first new nuclear reactor in the US in about 3 decades:
15 Feb: Forbes: Steve Zwick: Heartland And DeSmogBlog Square Off Over Incendiary Documents
Ever wonder how people who write things that don’t make sense can afford to pay their bills?…
It will be interesting to see how this plays out, for DeSmogBlog has proven not only credible over the past six years, but adept at rolling out its message – something that the scientific community has generally failed to do. The blog was started by PR-man Jim Hoggan and journalist Richard Littlemore to address “the use of PR techniques and spin by politicians, scientists, and in the media” rather than the actual science of climate change, which it leaves to sites like RealClimate.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevezwick/2012/02/15/the-real-climategate-desmog-blog-outs-heartland-propaganda-machine/
that’s as much as i can bear to excerpt from this guy.

pat

btw…the Forbes article was called “The Real Climategate” but, if u google it now – u will find a number of links about it. similarly, click on the link in Nelson’s blog below, and u will get the article i posted above instead:
15 Feb: Tom Nelson: Forbes warmist Steve Zwick “sees” what he desperately wants to see: Heartland “spreading dangerous disinformation”; ClimateGate scientists “obsessing over getting things right ”
(LINK) The REAL Climategate: Blog Busts Anti-Science Warchest – Forbes
http://tomnelson.blogspot.com.au/2012/02/forbes-warmist-steve-zwick-what-he.html
don’t know if anyone has a screen capture of the original “real climategate” article.

Glenn

Desmogblog.com and boys all hang in Vancouver – Pacific Standard Time.
John Lefebvre, Richard Littlemore, James Hoggan
Brendan DeMelle lives in Seattle
One of their close buds, John Mashey, lives in California.

Anthony, several of your points are transparently false as can be determined by comparing the “strategy” document with the 990 form. The later is clearly an authentic document, containing, as it does, the signature of Bast. Equally clearly it is a scanned document, containing as it does hand written notation. Inspecting its properties shows that it lacks entries if the fields for Title, Author, Subject, Keywords, and Application, and PDF producer. As it is last modified in August 2011, it was not scanned by the releaser of the documents at the time of their release, and consequently there is no reason to think the missing fields were “sanitized”.
The simplest assumption is that the scanner used simply did not enter the data in those fields when the document was made.
Applying the same assumption to the strategy document, there is no reason to believe metadata was sanitized from that document either. On the contrary, there is every reason to believe that it was a paper document that was scanned on the day before it was released by desmog blog. That, by itself, provides no reason to think the document inauthentic. It does give reason to think its authenticity is inconsistent with the Heartland Institutes account of events. Specifically, had the document been received as an email, or email attachment from a phishing scam, then there would have been no reason to first print it out and then scan it. On the other hand, if the document is authentic, then some person had a paper copy of an authentic document which is inconsistent with the Heartland Institutes account of events.
The Heartland Institute can clarify this point by the simple expedient of releasing the email from the person fraudulently pretending to be a board member, and the covering email sent to that purported board member. Simple checking of the times of creation will then show that these documents predate the release, and that their story is accurate, thereby confirming the fraudulent nature of the strategy document. Public release of the (already released) attachments would aid this process.
As it stands, one piece of evidence strongly suggests that the leak was performed by an insider, not by an outsider conducting a phishing attack as suggested by the Heartland Institute. Specifically, the date of last modification of the 990 form differs between that released by the leaker, and that released by the Heartland Institute. Had the 990 document been obtained by a phishing attack, then the last modified date on the 990 document would have been the same as, or post dated that released by Heartland. Clearly the leaker already possessed a copy of the 990 form prior to its modification on December 6, 2011. It may be that the leaker already had the 990 form in their possession, and then phished for the other documents, but absent clear evidence to the contrary (ie, the release of the emails), the presumption must be that the leak was from a member of the Heartland Institute, and therefore that the “strategy” document is, as it purports to be, and internal document of restricted circulation rather than an official document.
(Note, for the respective dates of the 990 modifications, I am relying or your quote of Dukes, and have not confirmed it for myself.

Charles Gerard Nelson

What was it Anthony said about Climategate2 emails…’they’re real and they’re magnificent!’
The natural response to this must surely be ‘they’re fake and slightly mis-shapen.’!
Noted that even the Warmist UK Independent newspaper has left this story alone.
Could it possibly have been a double bluff by that I mean a sting to draw out the rabid Warmists at the Guardian and BBC and reveal them to be…well rabid?

A. Scott

Heartland has stated the “Strategy” document was forged. It is this document that contains the prejudicial comments – including the part about discouraging teachers from teaching science:

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.

This document as has been noted was a scan, created Monday of this week, by an Epson scanner. Scanning the document strips originating information from document properties as Anthony and others have showed.
What is also revealed however, is that the writing style, both what and how it is phrased, and key punctuation, is different.
Below is the section on the Climate Education initiative from the detailed 29 page “Fundraising Plan” document. That PDF has NOT been stripped of document properties, and shows it was created by Joseph Bast on 1/16/2012 at 10am.
This commentary greatly expands on the alleged “Strategy” document, and the description of the education program shows they have engaged a professional, well connected and credentialed individual, to create a teaching program that meets the requirements and explores both sides – noting these items are controversial. There is nothing remotely similar to or whatsoever related to the alleged comment that the goal was to dissuade teachers from teaching this topic.
Several other notes …
First, the alleged “Strategy” doc author states “the topic of climate change is controversial and uncertain”. However, a read of the lengthier and more detailed education comments in the “Fundraising” document shows no mention of the term “uncertain” – only the word “controversial” was used … its use is an inflammatory embellishment.
Second, I would note the author in the alleged “Strategy” document makes the comment about dissuading teachers from teaching after use of a dash. Here too the comment is an inflammatory embellishment, with no similar mention made in the longer and more detailed education section in the validated “Fundraising” document.
Third – the author in the “Fundraising” document in all of its 29 pages – used the “dash” in a sentence a total of 3 times. Each of these times he used them in a pair – as I did in prior and this sentence – in place of comma’s. The “Strategy” author used dashes a like 3 times – in just two pages. And each time as a single dash, used in place of a comma or semi-colon – to add a modifier or extension to the sentence.
Last – no other document in the group at desmog contains wording remotely similar to the inflammatory statements in the alleged “Strategy” document. Similarly none of the writings anywhere from Heartland – not even their “Response to Critics” page (which shows deSmog as a long time attacker) is anything other than straightforward.
For example: the “Fundraising”, “Binder1” and “Budget” PDF files (all validated as created by J. Bast) all have writing style that is similar in each and every one. Straightforward – free of inflammatory embellishments – exactly as one would expect from a professional organization. The “Strategy” document on the other hand has several inflammatory embellishments – both uncharacteristic of the writings of J. Bast – and not found in any of the other documents.
Draw your own conclusions.
It is sad that these people have so much hatred that they would attack Heartland, and those associated, in the first place – especially when it exposes their hypocrisy – exposes the huge, orders of magnitude, difference in funding for the AGW brigade vs the skeptical science side.
Worse though, that they would be so desperate they would forge a document to make it seem worse.

H. 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 presented Heartland a proposal to produce a global warming curriculum for K-12 schools that appears to have great potential for success. Dr. Wojick is a consultant with the Office of Scientific and Technical Information at the U.S. Department of Energy in the area of information and communication science. He has a Ph.D. in the philosophy of science and mathematical logic from the University of Pittsburgh and a B.S. in civil engineering from Carnegie Tech. He has been on the faculty of Carnegie Mellon and the staffs of the U.S. Office
of Naval Research and the Naval Research Lab.
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.
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.
We tentatively plan to pay Dr. Wojick $5,000 per module, about $25,000 a quarter, starting in the second quarter of 2012, for this work. The Anonymous Donor has pledged the first $100,000 for this project, and we will circulate a proposal to match and then expand upon that investment.

pat

Delingpole should consider our Govt, which is spending/borrowing money faster than even the US Fed could print it, and much of it on CAGW schemes that are not only costly, but highly destructive – e.g. electricity and water prices are unaffordable to many because of this CAGW nonsense. the EU’s unilateral carbon tax hasn’t even kicked in as yet for Qantas:
16 Feb: Australian Daily Telegraph: Phil Jacob: Qantas to cut 500 jobs as profits drop 83 per cent
FIRST it was the banks, then it was Qantas – and today even more iconic brands announced job cuts in yet another blow for worried workers.
Qantas kicked off a horror day by declaring it would slash 500 jobs, followed closely by oil refiner Caltex which ominously declared it would determine the fate of 800 workers within the next six months.
Next was breads and spreads maker Goodman Fielder, which will axe 300 jobs, before Bonds joined the party with 100 workers on the chopping block.
The timing couldn’t have been worse, with the news coming as the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported the unemployment rate fell from 5.2 per cent to 5.1 per cent in January – its lowest level in six months.
Bizarrely, the statistics revealed there were 23 million fewer hours worked during January. The tally was also at odds with recent Roy Morgan figures that painted a very different picture of the “real economy”.
Unemployment in January, as measured by Roy Morgan, was 10.3 per cent – up 2.4 per cent since January last year – suggesting about 1,278,000 Australians were jobless and looking for work.
The Roy Morgan numbers are now more than double the official ABS mark.
University of Western Sydney professor Steven Keen described the disparity as “remarkable”, adding: “Clearly there’s something wrong if one research is suggesting the economy is doing well and the other is very dire.”…
http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/national/hundreds-face-sack-as-qantas-swings-the-axe/story-e6freuzr-1226272194851
anyone who knows the real unemployment figures in the US will understand the discrepancies.
Ron Paul for President.

Mike McMillan

CodeTech says: February 16, 2012 at 12:32 am
It’s as authentic as … and 0bama’s Nobel. Wait, that was authentic. …

True. O’Bama’s anticipatory Nobel was authentic.
The Nobel Committee was the hoax.

Isonomia

Unfortunately, I have to be dispassionate and treat anything accredited to the Heartland institute with the same critical mind as e.g. the climategate emails.
However reading the Guardian … well what a load of carp. What we see is that the heatland (or heartless as I sometime jokingly call them) who lobby pro-smoking (which I wouldn’t want anyone to promote, but I think its a step too far to ban) … they are amazingly, yes absolutely amazingly …being funded by tobacco companies.
And they go on about Micro$oft … who are just a money grabbing bunch of useless software pushers … funding the heartless institute to promote some PR scheme to stop the world realising that Micro$oft are only in it for the money.
So then I went to the biased broadcasting company … who appear to have whole departments set aside solely to push global warming. And I read:
The next target appears to be schools. The plan is to fund a consultant, David Wojick, to develop modules for use in classrooms.
The plan is to fund A consultant. Richard Black AKA Goebels black propaganda machine who seems to spend all his time as a public-paid PR consultant to the warmist industry trying to con the world (and everyone school child in Britain through the BBC) has the gall to complain that the single highest profile sceptic organisation is going to fund one person.
In other words, it is just fine when the BBC, ABC and a host of other public funded organisations set out to brain wash our children into believing their nonsense. But when some tobacco funded think thank has the audacity to fund just one person to put the other side.
That is why we have the BBC!!! … We have the BBC because it is supposed to put both sides and not leave that to tobacco funded think tanks who clearly aren’t the ideal people to be educating my kids
The real point is that people like Black feel that so long as they are being supported by the government and the elite, they can say or do anything and No one should be allowed to oppose them … in other words, that is precisely what the Nazi propaganda machine did. I’ve no doubt that there were people just like Black in the Nazi propaganda machine who were pushing the great lie of the evil Jews … and of course anyone who rejected the “overwhelming consensus” was clearly an evil denier, etc.
That is the real denier-gate. It is that publicly funded people like Black who have a legal requirment to be impartial wholly and and totally disgracefully deny their responsibility to be impartial … impartial even when they don’t personally like or support what the “other side” is saying.

Iren

A rational person would endorse someone only after they knew who the opponent was. Very strange, coming ftom Delingpole.
==================
Did you read the article? Very tongue in cheek. If you can call being compared with a tarantula in the bath an endorsement then, yes, he endorsed Obama. What he’s really saying is that, sadly, Mitt Romney is a clone of David Cameron. I can sympathise because, here in Australia, we have had the same experience with Kevin Rudd. As for our present PM, Julia Gillard, words can’t express how loathed she is.

A. Scott

Keith Kloor claims to have been forwarded the original email accompanying the documents from the “insider/leaker”:
http://www.collide-a-scape.com/2012/02/15/climate-skeptic-organization-feels-the-heat/
He posts the wording from it:

Dear Friends (15 of you):
In the interest of transparency, I think you should see these files from the Heartland Institute. Look especially at the 2012 fundraising and budget documents, the information about donors, and compare to the 2010 990 tax form. But other things might also interest or intrigue you. This is all I have. And this email account will be removed after I send.

What is MOST interesting is what they recommend be checked out – the “fundraising and budget documents, the information about donors, and compare to the 2010 990 tax form”
What seems MUCH more interesting is what it does the it does not say, or should I say reference.

Isonomia

Just realised that I wrote a whole piece without commenting as to whether the paper was a fake.
Let’s put it this way … I’ve got kids, if they had produced these documents … I would be quite proud of their ingenuity. But if these are produced by anyone old enough to vote.
As for people like the BBC and Guardian thinking it was true. Come on!
As my kid said (quoting the Beano) “Look, there’s gullible written on the ceiling”.
p.s. …. and yes I did look …. but I claim I didn’t hear properly. Which my wife also did and also claimed. Which I suppose means we both like to see the evidence ourselves …. even if its evidence that we are gullible!

JimboW

I think that CodeTech nails the real give away, the idea that they would see themselves as trying to stop teachers from teaching science. This is not the perspective of any real sceptics that I know of. Real science is our friend. It is purely a warmist fantasy of how we think, and basically a projection of their attitude onto their adversaries.

cui bono

Are the cops involved yet? Presumably they are a bit more competent over there than our own blessed Norfolk constabulary, and can track the document source fairly quickly.
Mmm, actually I base this only on US police TV series (CSI Heartland?). US citizens may have a different perspective?

Stephen

Anthony, the key point in these emails is you are being paid a substantial amount of money to write a skeptic blog from an institution that receives a considerable amount of oil money. Is this true or not?
REPLY: No, it isn’t, as I said clearly in this post:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/02/15/some-notes-on-the-heartland-leak/
There is no person, nor group, nor organization that has any editorial control of WUWT except for me. -Anthony

Archonix

Alan Wilkinson says:
February 16, 2012 at 12:33 am

Question: are there any facts in the faked memo which could not have been extracted from the other documents or otherwise publicly known?

It seems to be spiced with a few facts but that doesn’t change much. Anyone with any experience knows that the best way to sell a lie is to mix a few bits of the truth in with it. It grants authenticity and creates a situation where one can then claim that people who point out the fake parts are attempting to deny The Facts, as exemplified by the little bits of truth and ignoring the mess of forgery in which they’re embedded.

Michael Lowe

But who are the deSmogBlog?
According to its website, its aim is to “clear the PR pollution that is clouding the science on climate change.”
The website says:
“The DeSmogBlog team is led by Jim Hoggan, founder of James Hoggan & Associates, one of Canada’s leading public relations firms. By training a lawyer, by inclination a ski instructor and cyclist, Jim Hoggan believes that integrity and public relations should not be at odds – that a good public reputation generally flows from a record of responsible actions. His client list includes real estate development companies, high tech firms, pharmaceutical, forest industry giants, resorts and academic institutions. He is also a Board Member of the David Suzuki Foundation…The DeSmogBlog team is especially grateful to our founding benefactor John Lefebvre, a lawyer, internet entrepreneur and past-president of NETeller, a firm that has been providing secure online transactions since 1999. John has been outspoken, uncompromising and courageous in challenging those who would muddy the climate change debate, and he has enabled and inspired the same standard on the blog.”
This doesn’t sound too different to me to the Heartland institute as revealed by their own documents – a few rich backers, a PR team, money to worthy causes etc – where’s the scandal again?.

I’ve just read the document at DeSmugBlog. The thing that leaped out at me was the description of certain potential Heartland sympathisers as anti-climate. Huh ! People who are against the climate !!?? I have only ever come across this sort of sloppy caricature in pro-CAGW propaganda.

Jimbo

“…..two key points that are effective at dissuading teachers from teaching science.”
This should heat up most people’s BS detectors. Why on Earth would Heartland attempt to dissuade teachers from teaching science?
Just to remind commenters: Heartland is a private outfit. Anthony Watts is a private outfit. They are not accountable to the press or the public as long as they obey the laws of the land. CRU receives public funds and therefore should be publicly accountable.

Anoneumouse

Anthony
With regard to the BBC (Black) and Guardian (Hickman and others) is it worth you sending an advisory memo to the Leveson inquiry.
http://www.levesoninquiry.org.uk/
We’re interested in hearing from professionals and the public with
information and examples in response to the specific questions below.
Your answers may be considered as potential evidence to the inquiry.
The issue of stories that attract a high degree of press attention but
subsequently turn out to be false was raised at the seminars. The
Inquiry would be interested in submissions from editors, reporters and
subjects of such stories – why they occur (what are the pressures that
drive press interest), and how they occur (what checks and balances
are or should be in place to stop this happening and why do they
sometimes not operate)?

Heartland say all sorts of crimes have been committed, so presumably they’ll call in the police. Maybe that will get the answer.