Misuse of The Law; Another Battle in the Climate Wars

Guest Opinion: Dr. Tim Ball

“In war, truth is the first casualty.” Aeschylus (525 BC – 456 BC)

Maybe my first payment from Exxon for my climate views will arrive with the subpoena from the Attorney General (AG) of the Virgin Islands charging me under the Criminally Influenced and Corruptions Organizations Act (CICO) for trying to tell the truth. This is the Virgin Island’s version of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). Most who contribute to WUWT, are included because at the public event,

“Al Gore, announced that his new coalition would find “creative ways” to prosecute fossil fuel companies, individuals, and organizations who disagree with the catastrophic global warming narrative.”

 

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From left to left; Al Gore, NY Ag Eric Schneiderman, and Claude Walker.

My sarcasm is driven by cynicism because the AG’s actions are a sure sign of the failure of proponents of anthropogenic global warming (AGW). As Gandhi said,

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”

 

Now they are fighting. Winning speaks to the war between the proper use of science and the use of science for a political agenda that manifests itself in all sorts of battles.

Two weapons of the science and climate wars are regulations and the law. They are used with increasing frequency by the losers as the evidence slowly reveals that one side is correct.

Proponents of AGW avoided the conflict initially by ignoring the scientific method, rules set in place to determine the truth in science. As Douglas Yates explained,

“No scientific theory achieves public acceptance until it has been thoroughly discredited.”

They bypassed this most basic rule in science, which underscores the paradox of rules. A dictionary definition of rules says they are

“one of a set of explicit or understood regulations or principles governing conduct within a particular activity or sphere.”

 

Rules are designed to make a system function efficiently and to achieve an objective. However, when people say they are going to work to rule, they are saying they will incapacitate a system by their interpretation of the rules. Proponents of AGW let the public believe they were working to rule, particularly the scientific method, knowing the public didn’t understand it. It’s a double deception of the sort deemed necessary and acceptable in war by those with an agenda seeking to avoid or distort the truth. The public weren’t the only ones fooled. A vast majority of scientists (97%?) simply assumed that other scientists were following the rules. Klaus-Eckart Puls made that assumption and was angry when he discovered the truth.

“Ten years ago I simply parroted what the IPCC told us. One day I started checking the facts and data – first I started with a sense of doubt but then I became outraged when I discovered that much of what the IPCC and the media were telling us was sheer nonsense and was not even supported by any scientific facts and measurements. To this day I still feel shame that as a scientist I made presentations of their science without first checking it.”

When you start to lose the war, the common initial reaction is to resist, dig in, and counterattack. AGW proponents did this in various ways as documented by many examples. A good example was the reaction to the leaked emails from the CRU known as Climategate. They initiated five inquiries. Clive Crook, senior editor of The Atlantic, wrote;

“I had hoped, not very confidently, that the various Climategate inquiries would be severe. This would have been a first step towards restoring confidence in the scientific consensus. But no, the reports make things worse. At best they are mealy-mouthed apologies; at worst they are patently incompetent and even wilfully wrong. The climate-science establishment, of which these inquiries have chosen to make themselves a part, seems entirely incapable of understanding, let alone repairing, the harm it has done to its own cause.”

Resistance includes refusing to correct serious errors, such as Al Gore’s failure to withdraw and revise his movie despite the identification of nine errors by a UK court. The attempts to stop the gradual exposure of the global warming deception by ignoring, bending, or breaking the general rules is failing. Whenever that happens, or a situation is really threatening the pattern is to misuse the formal societal rules – the law.

 

A definition of the law says it is,

any written or positive rule or collection of rules prescribed under the authority of the state or nation, as by the people in its constitution.

 

the controlling influence of such rules; the condition of society brought about by their observance:

 

In other words, the law is a set of rules written to make a society function. When you want a society to fail, simply misuse the law.

Many individual climate skeptics who managed to get media attention with effective arguments became the first to receive lawsuits. At the first Heartland Institute Climate Conference in New York (2008) they honored me with sharing a keynote platform with Fred Singer. Over lunch Fred talked with me about the parallels between my lawsuits and the ones he and others received.

Now the situation is changing. Individuals are no longer the concern as many fight back, refusing to be bullied into silence by these Strategic Lawsuit against Public Participation (SLAPP). An interesting comment by a free speech website explains the extent of the application.

SLAPPs take the form of a variety of lawsuits. They commonly masquerade as defamation or business interference tort suits. Civil rights, anti-trust, and intellectual property laws have all been used to bring SLAPPs. However, SLAPP filers can be very creative. Recently, a union was SLAPPed by a corporation that alleged that the union’s organizing activities constituted a conspiracy under federal organized crime laws.

Meanwhile, the legal profession and some politicians became concerned about this misuse of the law. The law, a set of rules ostensibly designed to protect people, was being used to silence and harass. So far 28 US States enacted anti-SLAPP legislation. James Hansen, who put the entire issue of global warming on the world stage with his 1988 Senate Hearing, was calling for public trials of CEOs for crimes against humanity. He made his charges many times, but especially in a 2008 article. Hansen certainly had Al Gore’s ear from 1988 forward.

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse was one of the first to urge charging climate skeptics under the RICO laws. However, the idea became reality at a news conference on March 29, 2016, when a group of Attorneys General dubbed, the Green 20, supported charges filed by Claude Walker, AG of the Virgin Islands.

The wording of the subpoena makes clear that Virgin Islands’ attorney general Claude Walker will be utilizing the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) act to silence global warming skeptics and crush political opponents. Aside from serving ExxonMobil with a subpoena, Walker has also served one up to the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI.)

Al Gore appeared at the conference and spoke in support of the action of using “creative ways” to prosecute individuals, groups, and businesses.

There is a serious problem in the subpoena. It states

“Climate Change” refers to the general subject matter of changes in global or regional climates that persist overtime, whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity.”

Presumably, the scientific basis of the subpoena is the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The definition given in the subpoena is the one the IPCC should have used. Instead, they limit their work to human causes of climate change.

The coalition, or Green 20, includes Attorneys General from California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Virginia, Vermont, Washington State and the U.S. Virgin Islands. I underlined the States with anti-SLAPP legislation. Presumably, it does not apply to this lawsuit. Certainly AGs from other States, many of who do not have anti-SLAPP legislation, agree the lawsuits are unjustified. The CEI legal response provides examples.

The Attorneys General of Alabama and Oklahoma stated that” Scientific and political debate” should not be silenced with threats of criminal prosecution by those who believe that their position is the only correct one and that all dissenting voices must therefore be intimidated coerced into silence.” They stated further that” it is inappropriate for state attorneys general to use the power of their office to attempt to silence core political speech on one of the major policy debates of our time.”

 

The Louisiana Attorney General observed that “it is one thing to use the legal system to pursue public policy outcomes; but it is quite another to use prosecutorial weapons to intimidate critics, silence free speech, or chill the robust exchange of ideas.”

 

Perhaps, one of the most pointed remarks came from the Kansas Attorney General who

“…questioned the” unprecedented” and” strictly partisan nature of announcing state law enforcement operations in the presence of the former vice president of the United States who, presumably as a private citizen, has no role in the enforcement of the 17 State[s] securities our consumer protection laws.”

These comments bring to mind the judgment of UK Court Justice Burton when ruling on the suitability of showing Gore’s movie in a classroom.

“Its theme is not merely the fact that there is global warming, and that there is a powerful case that such global warming is caused by man, but that urgent, and if necessary expensive and inconvenient, steps must be taken to counter it, many of which are spelt out.”

This anticipated Gore’s involvement with the charges filed under the CICO Act in the Virgin Islands. Among the charges is the claim that

The group alleges that Exxon knew rising carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions could cause catastrophic global warming, but suppressed the information.

 

The claim is confusing but addresses the duplicity of companies like Exxon to manoeuvre around the public relations problem instead of dealing with it purely on the basis of the science. I wrote about the failure of this tactic concerning Volkswagen and the software scandal in an articled titled Volkswagen: Crass Crony Corporate Capitalistic Capitulation. The charge is more appropriately applied to Exxon. Their entire business is based on climate and climate change. The fact they switch refining operations summer and winter based on driving demands and home heating are proof. It is both logical and necessary that they do climate research as part of R and D. Indeed, no smart investor would buy shares in an energy company not staying up to date on the latest climate research.

It is logical to assume that their professionals knew and understood the climate science. Presumably, the company made a decision to ignore the science and the evidence. As I wrote about business and industry in general,

They surrendered to the eco-bullying even promoting what they had to know, or could easily discover, was bad science. They abjectly backed away despite simple and plausible options – they became appeasers. Like all appeasers, they only created bigger problems for themselves and society.

 

This does not justify the misuse of the rules of science or the perversion of the law to achieve a political agenda. It illustrates that there is sufficient blame for the entire fiasco. Unfortunately, the AGs do not have a tiger by the tail.

So, millions of dollars are wasted, money better spent on resolving the real problems of hunger, unemployment, and lack of development. Sadly, and hypocritically, these are all problems the likes of Al Gore claim as their concerns. Meanwhile, as I wait for my Exxon payment and AG subpoena from the Virgin Islands, I use my time productively to help people understand the idiocy and cost of it all.

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124 thoughts on “Misuse of The Law; Another Battle in the Climate Wars

  1. ” This anticipated Gore’s involvement with the charges filed under the CICO Act in the Virgin Islands. Among the charges is the claim that ” … RICO not CICO ??

    • From the first paragraph:
      “Criminally Influenced and Corruptions Organizations Act (CICO) for trying to tell the truth. This is the Virgin Island’s version of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).”

    • 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Enforcement_Act_of_1871) seems a fitting response to these persecutions.

      “Every person who under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory or the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, Suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress, except that in any action brought against a judicial officer for an act or omission taken in such officer’s judicial capacity, injunctive relief shall not be granted unless a declaratory decree was violated or declaratory relief was unavailable. …”

      • Marxism is an attack on Western civilization handed down by history legal, economic and cultural traditions.

  2. Assuming the citizens of these States of the USA,care about law,order and oaths of office.
    These same State citizens have to deal with these fools.
    Impeach them, or find yourself amongst the next batch of imaginary heretics.
    Or surrender to the kleptocracy.
    Treason being defined as deliberately attempting to destroy the society you have pledged allegiance to.
    These attorney generals sworn an oath, this combined action to punish the nonbelievers, violates every principle of the US constitution.
    Apply the law to these criminals.

    Lawfare is a foolish game.

    As our democracies have devolved into kleptocracy, the individual has lost near all legal protection.
    What is not permitted is now prohibited.
    Maybe I should capitalize this?
    No longer is there “No Law against it”.
    Now if no law exists you cannot be permitted to act.
    The gall,arrogance and ignorance of these parasites knows no limits, yet they will scream to the heavens if their own rules are applied to themselves.
    Kleptocracy, being the government by thieves for the benefit of these thieves, generates a fine class of entitled parasites.
    These laws they create are only for the compliant little people, never to the lords and ladies of the parasitic overload.

    Politely these attorney generals must resign.
    Having such poor judgement precludes them from the offices they were elected to.

  3. “It is logical to assume that their professionals knew and understood the climate science”

    “Presumably, the company made a decision to ignore the science and the evidence”

    And they failed to inform their stockholders about it (and the general public). Instead they paid think tanks to do the obfuscation for them. So they could go on making money. Nice!

    • …LOL…Maybe you should try rereading that paragraph again..You clearly missed his point !

      • Can you call it missing the point, when he clearly lacks the mental abilities to understand the point?

    • And the name of the ‘think tanks’ – and your qualification for claiming such? By your lights, we should be prosecuting the Club Of Rome for claiming (in Limits to Growth) that oil and coal would be finished by 2005/15. But of course, warmists are allowed to be wrong, sceptics, never (even when they’re right).

      • Wagen are you saying Exxon had empirical proof CO2 would cause AGW?

        So you are saying Exxon’s science is infinitely better than “97% of scientists”? Huh?

        Explain how Exxon “knew” when no one else has any hard data

      • Wagen: So, your qualification is that you can read. Well so can I. So we’re equally qualified.
        As for the fact that Exxon’s ‘scientists’ new about climate change and the GHE – didn’t everyone? Isn’t that really just basic science. Their fault is not in having access to Gore’s crystal balls – which you seem to be privy to. It’s no coincidence that the key climate model is named MAGICC.

      • And they failed to inform their stockholders about the risk this poses to their business. As Tim Ball says:

        “Presumably, the company made a decision to ignore the science and the evidence”

      • And the “risk” is what? We’re all doomed??? You really are a “one wheel on my Wagen”, aren’t you? Climate change (by whom-ever) will not be the end of civilisation as we know it: Gore and his mates will take care of that while they enrich themselves at our expense.

      • The risks their own scientists said are there. And the risk to their own business if society seriously decides to de-carbonize.

        And in the meantime funding think tanks to spread confusion. So they can make more money while leaving the public and their investors in the dark.

        It’s not difficult to understand.

      • Oh dear, Wagen. The world is troubled by NOx, SoX, and now, your Blox. I can’t be bothered to continue this nonsense exchange anymore. Go away, get yourself a personal Manager, so you can stop handling yourself.

      • What risk to their business could they have foreseen 40 years ago? That the world would go collectively mad over a 1 molecule in 10,000 rise in CO2? Were they supposed to inform their stockholders that everyone might go insane and blame them in the future for bad weather?

        I’d keep my mouth shut about it too. Better to be thought a fool than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt.

      • There is no scientific proof NOW, and there was certainly no scientific proof 40 years ago..

        Just WILD, UNPROVEN CONJECTURE… like now.

        No company bothers with WILD UNPOROVEN CONJECTURE.

        Exxon did exactly the correct thing in ignoring MYTHS and FAIRY TALES.

      • Wagon, knowing that CO2 might warm the world by a few tenths of a degree is not the same as saying that they knew the wildest fantasies of the eco warriors was going to happen.

      • Wagan’s SciAm evidence is nothing but a partisan hit-piece; yellow journalism that merely shows how degraded SciAm has become.

        Shannon Hall is the writer, and look at the experts she cites throughout: InsideClimate News (partisan alarmist site), Naomi Oreskes (biased accuser extraordinaire), Greenpeace (fount of anti-objectivity), the Union of Concerned Scientists (unscientific volumizers of IPCC bias), Bob Ward (indefatigable propagandizer of the alarmist Grantham Institue).

        Ms. Shannon promotes as personal experts Naomi Oreskes and Kenneth Kimmel of the UCS; members in good standing of the AGW propaganda machine and neither of whom have ever given any evidence of actually understanding the science. Mr. Kimmel trained as a lawyer and has “30 years of experience in government, environmental policy, and advocacy.” Hardly reassuring credentials to speak with dispassionate accuracy on a scientific issue.

        Let’s all congratulate Ms. Shannon for her success in practicing the Howard Zinn method of journalism. When the full facts don’t support your cause and you want to change the world: dissimulate.

      • Betty Pfeiffer, what could be their message, when they don’t know what they’re talking about?

        Considering your, “How typical of you…, my typicality includes such things as analysis of the air temperature record, the reliability of climate models, and whether climate modelers are even scientists at all, among others.

        So, evidence apparently has it that in making your cast at me, you didn’t do any research and therefore don’t know what you’re talking about either. In good green practice though, that didn’t stop you from exposing your ignorance.

        If you’d like to take issue on any of those posts, by the way, please do have at it.

    • It has not been demonstrated that CO2 drives earth’s average temperature, ever.
      If it’s true, prove it.
      You can’t now and you certainly couldn’t do it 30 years ago.
      Also, I doubt that you could provide the name of the CEO at EXXON guilty of this crime.
      One would think you ‘d know his name since you seem to believe the CEO knew the seas were going to rise to cover NYC then boil away. Billions of people would be killed by increased floods and droughts and hurricanes and tornadoes.
      You think he lied by omission by not demanding oil production and sales stop.
      Even though it’s a well known fact that their oil company has lifted much of the world out of poverty and has made for a cleaner and safer world, you think that means nothing because of unproven global warming.
      Is that what you think?

      • “You think he lied by omission”

        That’s almost the point it all comes down to. Did Exxon lie by omission while paying others to sow confusion about the issue?

      • I think there are misconceptions here, about Exxon. Some people are assuming that Exxon knew that climate science was wrong but decided not to publicly stand up against the CAGW movement. ie, the accusation is that Exxon knew the mainstream science was wrong but kept quiet to avoid being attacked while covertly funding climate sceptics to do their work for them. Others are assuming that Exxon knew the mainstream science was right but kept quiet in order to protect their fossil fuel business. ie. the accusation is that Exxon knew the science was right but put profit ahead of science.

        IMHO, both of these sets of people are wrong.

        Exxon knew that the mainstream science was wrong. The article is surely correct in its assessment of Exxon’s science capability. But it is against Exxon’s commercial interests to go public with this knowledge. Everyone seems to be assuming that because Exxon’s business is in fossil fuels, Exxon’s commercial interests are threatened by the CAGW movement. But that is absolutely wrong. Exxon stands to benefit massively from the attack on fossil fuels. The CAGWers are doing everything they can to destroy the coal industry. They are also promoting wind and solar while campaigning vigorously against nuclear. Exxon fully understands that without coal or nuclear energy, the power generation industry will be taken over by natural gas, because wind and solar are incapable of providing the energy needed. Natural gas is part of Exxon’s business, and the power generation business is a very valuable prize. The death of coal will give a massive boost to Exxon’s business. Exxon’s oil is not under serious attack, because its main use is for transport and a viable alternative for transport is still many years away. Oil is also used for heating, but that’s no problem for Exxon – if heating oil is attacked then Exxon can simply replace it with gas.

        So to summarise, the two most common misconceptions are:
        1. Exxon knew the mainstream science was wrong but kept quiet in order to avoid attack while covertly funding sceptics.
        2. Exxon knew the mainstream science was right but kept quiet in order to protect its fossil fuel business.
        The reality is
        3. Exxon knew the mainstream science was wrong but kept quiet in order to expand its fossil fuel business.

        Exxon’s have openly provided financial support to mainstream climate science, and they have done it for Exxon’s direct commercial benefit.

      • Thank you Mike for laying out an argument instead of building up an imaginary tale of what I think (what a few other people do here)!

        I still stick to 2. though:

        “2. Exxon knew the mainstream science was right but kept quiet in order to protect its fossil fuel business.”

        I do get that if societies decide to phase out coal first, that Exxon may profit from an intermediate increase of demand for gas and oil.

        However, if Exxon wants the death of coal as you call it, why did they not call out coal companies before or now (“coal bad for climate, gas is much better”)?

      • So, Wagen, if they knew their activities MIGHT cause warming, what exactly is wrong with warming? It clearly is not as much as the computer models were programmed to say, nor happening as rapidly as the alarmists want it to. Based on past performance why believe any other of their claims when these two most important ones – degree and rate – are so ridiculously wrong? Shouldn’t it occur to you now that maybe the call to panic is rather over-the-top wrong too?

      • “maybe the call to panic is rather over-the-top wrong too?”

        A fine demonstration of what I complemented Mike about:

        “instead of building up an imaginary tale of what I think”

        Congratulations!

        Now read the thread again. They knew/know about the reality of the risks but shut up about it and instead financed think tanks to produce contrarian stories.

        Is this illegal? I don’t know. We will find out if a judge/jury decides on it.

      • There is no scientific proof NOW, and there was certainly no scientific proof 40 years ago..

        Just WILD, UNPROVEN CONJECTURE… like now.

        No company bothers with WILD UNPROVEN CONJECTURE.

        Exxon did exactly the correct thing in ignoring MYTHS and FAIRY TALES.

      • Wagen, “instead of building up an imaginary tale of what I think”? You have built an imaginary tale based on what you think ( a Scientific American article with ‘inferential’ references does not constitute proof), why condescend to others who question your merits in a similar fashion?

      • What risks??? That it “might” get warmer? There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s BEEN warmer. It was good. Nature loved it. So did all the little animals and the big animals too. People thrived, but then that’s the “problem” isn’t it. People thrived.

        Computer models over the top. Time to ignore them. Panic over the top. Time to stop listening to the doom-and-gloomers who just like to manipulate people. Enough is enough already.

        The alarmists are wrong. Every step of the way WRONG. Why are you still listening to them?

      • Reading Mike’s points and then Wagen selecting number 2 without coherent logic as to why, while ignoring the massive profits Exxon would make from destroying coal, while stating Exxon are all about profits at the same time..

        I think we found the missing link, a species of human that can make contradictions but not understand contradictions.

      • Wagen

        I still stick to 2. though:

        “2. Exxon knew the mainstream science was right but kept quiet in order to protect its fossil fuel business.”

        I do get that if societies decide to phase out coal first, that Exxon may profit from an intermediate increase of demand for gas and oil. (completely unsubstantiated claim that is anathema to economic history)

        However, if Exxon wants the death of coal as you call it, why did they not call out coal companies before or now (“coal bad for climate, gas is much better”)? (what does call out even mean? You are asking a vague question as an answer to an economic reality?)

        Evasive incoherent and disingenuous. Well done Wagen take a bow.

        I do find it interesting that even when faced with economic reality supported by academia and history, you come back with such delusional ramblings

      • I’ve read Exxon’s relevant memo. They acknowledge that CO2 emissions may cause warming if the climate has no adjustment mechanism. They also acknowledge that the climate science of that day is entirely unable to resolve whether CO2 emissions will have any effect at all.

        At the end, Exxon resolves to continue paying attention to the issue, to see how it develops. In the meantime, they go about their business.

        Exxon was completely ethical on the issue.

        I think the best analogy to what’s going on here can be made with the circumstances surrounding the outrageous attacks on Willie Soon; subject of another recent post here on WUWT.

        The attacks on Willie were manufactured by malignant ugly-minded propagandizers, who concocted slanderous untruths by stitching together partial facts and then willfully misrepresenting them.

        The same tactic has been, and is being, applied to Exxon. By members of the same alliance of green-politics character assassins.

      • Mike Jonas,
        Last year ahead of the Paris COP-off, CEOs from ten mainly European oil majors signed a joint statement calling on world bureaucrats (I refuse to call any of them ‘leaders’) to fight gullible warming by taxing carbon (dioxide) emissions and subsidise CCS; which underscores their belonging to group 3, e.g. they know gullible warming is bogus but also know ‘decarbonizing’ in the real world is good for the oil & gas business as you’ve outlined.
        The declaration is here: http://www.oilandgasclimateinitiative.com/news/oil-and-gas-ceos-jointly-declare-action-on-climate-change/
        Reg Tillerson the CEO of ExxonMobil said out loud that ExxonMobil would not sign the petition because “…we won’t fake it on Climate Change…”
        So maybe thirty years ago ExxonMobil could be accused of belonging to the hypocrit club (which today includes Shell, BG Group, Eni, Pemex, BP, Saudi Aramco, Total, Statoil, Repsol & Reliance) but it’s an unfair accusation today.

        Wagen,
        in any sane world it would be impossible to prove beyond reasonable doubt that ExxonMobil knew something about gullible warming thirty years ago that the cause hadn’t already dreamed up during an acid trip in a backroom of the Rio Earth Summit, hid it and by doing so have caused harm, loss or disadvantage to anyone.
        Even today the cause can’t prove their case, which is why all this pointless repetative bleating about a concensus as if that makes up for it, and ‘the world’s first gullible warming refugee’ lost his case and was sent home to Kiribati.
        This is a feeble witch-hunt intending to intimidate scepticism of gullible warming before enough sheeple really figure out how thoroughly they’ve been rogered by the cause and have a sense of humour failure.
        I fervently hope ExxonMobil have the minerals to sue Claude Walker and the Gorealce personally for every imaginable cost they incur as a result of this rock-show once it gets thrown out of court. Including claims for potential lost income due to ‘loss of reputation’. Probably put some dent in an AG’s pension. Afterwards, let’s see whether the Goreacle is prepared to compensate any of ‘his’ coalition for their trouble and also how many public sector bureacrats are subsequently prepared to swing their meat policemen around in public support of the cause.
        …What’s good for the goose and all that

      • Erny72 (if you’re still watching this thread – sorry for the late response) : Thanks for providing that link. Exxon is indeed conspicuous by its absence. I was going to ask you for a link to the Tillerson “fake it” quote, but I have now found it.

        I’m happy to be proved wrong. Well, very likely wrong. It does seem that other oil and gas companies are guilty of the offence, but not Exxon.

    • Excessive heat leads to 1,700 deaths a year in U.K.
      http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/extreme-summer-temperatures-will-soon-cause-deaths-of-up-to-1700-more-britons-a-year-says-government-10286742.html

      Same year
      Excessive cold leads to 30,000 deaths a year in U.K.
      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/weather/11355906/Mortuaries-overflowing-as-freezing-weather-causes-rise-in-deaths.html

      Anybody callous enough to contribute to the deaths of 30,000 elderly people based on the flawed theory of Schmidt, Mann, Trenberth, etc. needs to take a hard look in the mirror.

      Exxon should get a humanitarian of the year award for all the lives it has saved.

      These AGs and politicians belong in jail along with the charlatans posing as scientists.

      • I notice that the title of the article re excess heat leads to 1,700 deaths a year reads “will soon cause up to”. Love the way their use of “may”, “could”, “might”, etc. gets transformed to mean “has”, “would” and “will”. “Leads to” sounds like it’s happened already. “Will soon cause up to…” means it hasn’t happened yet and will likely not. If anything ever DID happen, they’d be reporting it, instead it’s all conjecture and crystal ball-gazing. Sometimes it’s outright hoping for catastrophe.

        I guess their real message is, “start now and panic early before everyone is doing it.” Oh and, “Give us your money!”

      • Cars cause hundreds of thousands of deaths and injuries every year. The executives of the car companies know this as an obvious fact. Lock them up and close the car and truck factories immediately! Give them a consecutive sentence for the apocalyptic amount of CO2 their vehicles have put into the air. Is there any reason this process should not be followed given this legal approach to culpability?

      • Medical mistakes cause over 200,000 deaths per year. Lock up the doctors and close the hospitals. Extra punishment for ambulance personnel for CO2 emissions. ( For the vehicle, we’ll decide about the personal emissions later).

    • Wagen + Harry, both:
      What are you two going on about? In 1976, or even 1980, nobody knew anything of the sort. Climate science as we understand it today was in it’s infancy. Global Warming was still a bit of a pipe dream for environmentalists. At the time, the Ozone Hole and Acid Rain scares were still going strong, and GW would not be needed as a replacement scare for another decade.

      To assert that Exxon (or anybody else) knew, as established scientific fact, of CO2 induced planetary warming is absurd. CO2 induced planetary warming is not an established fact now, and it sure was not then.
      If you are not too sure what was known or not in 1980, we can flash forward to 1990 and read the IPCC FAR (First Assessment Report). Read all the fine print of might, maybe, could, and an acknowledgment that the prediction of future climate states is impossible. If it was not established fact in 1990, it sure was not in 1980.

      To assert that Exxon misled shareholders because Exxon did not inform them of the latest environmentalist scare is beyond absurd. It is preposterous.

      Note to Wagen:
      That article “Exxon knew about Climate Change almost 40 years ago”, is a tip off.
      30 years ago it was Global Warming. 20 years ago it was Global Warming. 10 years ago it was Global Warming. If you are hearing about “Climate Change” more than about 5 years ago, you are getting modern revisionist history which is pure propaganda.

      • “What are you (Wagen) going on about?” My point exactly. Wagen would be better employed walking round with a sandwich board saying: “The end is nigh” – ‘though he’d be walking round for ever..

        To him, Exxon was right in the ’70s, so need to be prosecuted (even though they were wrong), and The Club of Rome, who were wrong in the ’70s – and are still wrong – should not be taken to task.

      • Wagen: A ‘paper’ from 1978 – and not one of the authors/contributors known in the modern publications. How strange. Lack of traction, I presume.

      • ” Climate science as we understand it today was in it’s infancy.”

        And still is.

        The whole premise of AGW is still a disproven hypothesis

      • 40 years ago we were worried about global cooling. We all would have cheered Exxon on for saving the planet! Guys like Waggen would’ve been out in front of the parade and some of us would’ve been double checking the math. What has more value to society, the blind follower or the questioner of authority? I guess All Gore has decided.

      • I had a look at Wagen’s link to the Co2 paper – it really is a fascinating read, and well worth a closer look. I don’t doubt its authenticity from 1979, but it reads like a modern paper on climate change – the assumption of the role of Co2, the discussion of models and the total reliance on model output and conjecture all read like a current study. I was staggered that after 37 years and billions upon billions of dollars being spent, climate change advocates still have not advanced their concept of man-made climate change one little bit; only the levels of alarm have changed. This paper could stand as a testament to how much money is being wasted in this dead-end fallacy.

    • “Wagen”, another first person preterite of “Mike”. Mike, didn’t your mom warn you what would happen if you conjugated to much?

      • Conjugation leads to bad things like pimples, calluses, and blindness. Mom was always right.

        Wagen says:

        …if society seriously decides to de-carbonize.

        Then society has gone off the deep end. The crazies have taken over.

        Everything claimed about CO2 (“carbon” has turned out to be flat wrong. Are you listening, Wagen?

        Now that we’ve studied the situation for a few decades, these are the conclusions:

        • CO2 is completely harmless.

        • CO2 is highly beneficial to the biosphere.

        • Agricultural productivity has skyrocketed due to the rise in CO2.

        • There is zero global damage, or harm, due to the rise in CO2.

        • The two-thirds of humanity that subsists on less tha $2 a day is greatly benefiting from the rise in CO2.

        Every alarming prediction regarding the rise in CO2 has been flat wrong.

        • There is no downside to the rise in CO2; there are only benefits.

        If folks like Wagen were honest, they would admit that they were wrong for sounding the CO2 false alarm.

        Draw your own conclusions about that…

    • Wagen: Ah, I see so your concern is for the stockholders of Exxon-Mobil. Ah, good so you plan on compensating us for all the vilifying of the oil industry done by Al Gore, Obama, and other Dems, how nice you. Can I send you my address so you can send me a check?

    • It’s logical to think that 1950s ESSO foreknew about Global Warming decades before all of academia and every government did, and without the aid of computers? Is this an admission of stupidity, gross incompetence and malfeasance on their part?

      Me thinks it’s time to sell the Virgin Islands to China in exchange for a debt write-off.

    • It’s fascinating how the trolls keep repeating the mantra, no matter how many times it is refuted.
      It’s almost as if they are incapable of thinking anything except what their handlers tell them to think.

    • Wagen ‘It’s not difficult to understand.’

      No, it’s a very simple, very deliberate strawman, that has gotten a lot of mileage playing on the prejudice and authoritarianism inherent in the mob-mentality of the eco-activist and progressive left in general.

      And where would guys like Hitler be without the army of marching brooms (or perhaps paid shills from tax-exempt institutions like Greenpeace and the Sierra Club) who always seem to have time to post almost identical talking points – fifty to a hundred times per day, on multiple boards – even using their own alarmist, libelous accusations and sensationalist tripe as ‘evidence’? Because THESE are the people that make Goebbels’ methods work.

      And while you’re out supporting this witch hunt of honest scientists – Wagen the Dog, so speak – (all done to support their OWN billion dollar industry in the face of rampant fraud), you might as well take a bow in your green swastika, because people like you help make it happen.

      This is where true humanitarian crimes begin.

      https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;_ylt=AwrSbhierzBX.jYArZVXNyoA;_ylu=X3oDMTEyaWtpc2p2BGNvbG8DZ3ExBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDQjE1NjNfMQRzZWMDc2M-?p=history+of+the+world+inquistion&back=https%3A%2F%2Fsearch.yahoo.com%2Fsearch%3Fp%3Dhistory%2Bof%2Bthe%2Bworld%2Binquistion%26ei%3DUTF-8%26fp%3D1&fr=yfp-t-576&turl=http%3A%2F%2Fts2.mm.bing.net%2Fth%3Fid%3DOVP.Ve3bd6b9f3096defb1c9f682ca36ac487%26pid%3D15.1&rurl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DLnF1OtP2Svk&tit=The+Spanish+Inquisition+-+Mel+Brooks&l=515&vid=ba6d292923dbb1e1757a4f1db1f5cc1c&sigr=11b9ofcg2&sigb=12fgesnbp&sigt=114fukhlt&sigi=12b7cli8b

  4. A little fascist censorship anyone? Such harassment is just more paperwork from the POV of the bureaurocrats. Their “work product” is restraint of freedom through regulations, and in this case lawsuits and criminal charges. Like the academics who must “publish or perish” they must wield power in the bogus name of public good, or have nothing to justify their existence. The individual be damned.

  5. The simple fact is these AGs a bunch of crooks that would have fitted nicely into George Orwell’s1984, as a group they are far worse than any Mafia organization.

  6. Good write up Dr Ball, something to mull over. I think the Gandhi quote fits perfectly to the situation.

    • Laws are for the majority of society not all of society.

      You think the laws that apply to you and the punishments that are attached also apply to Bill Gates or Hillary Clinton? :D Snowden took confidential government data outside of a government network, Hillary Clinton took confidential government information outside of government too, one is a “traitor” stranded in Russia, the other running for president.

  7. If I live long enough, I look forward to the day when we can mount a RICO lawsuit against Gore et al. for the misallocation of trillions of dollars in tax money in his effort to enrich himself and others through his methods of conspiracy.

    • A RICO suit against Gore would seem to be appropriate now. He just announced to the world that he is conspiring with others to find “creative ways” to prosecute fossil fuel companies and others who don’t believe what he believes. He and his co-conspirators shouldn’t have to get “creative” to enforce a law if the law is straightforward. If it’s not straightforward, it’s a bad law. If an accountant announced to the public that he finds “creative ways” to get around laws and avoid taxes to keep sinking companies afloat, he would probably be inviting an audit investigation into his accounting methods. Gore’s “creative ways” should likewise invite investigation.

  8. “When you start to lose the war, the common initial reaction is to resist, dig in, and counterattack.”…..
    ==============
    I think if you reverse the order of those actions you might be closer to the real reaction.
    But who am I to nit-pick.

    • Different parts of the climate organ acted in different ways at different times.

      Mann is still resisting. Schmidt is laughing, Trenberth is digging in. Gleick fought (and lost), Gore is fighting (dirty and losing) The IPCC are still ignoring, they have ignored from day one. The environmentalists always attack.

  9. The funny thing is, the victims of this witch-hunt could charge these attorneys-general with conspiring to deprive a citizen of their civil rights. This is a crime for which the members of the conspiracy would be convicted (when proved) of a felony. Bye-bye law license, Bye-bye elected office, Bye-bye voting, and welcome to the grey-bar hotel. All it would take is a change of administration to someone who isn’t up to their necks in it.

    There is a civil version of this law as well, that doesn’t require the Attorney General’s assistance that could be used to personally bankrupt each of these individuals. It would take someone with very deep pockets, as these attorneys-general would unlawfully use the resources of the state to draw out the proceedings in an attempt to bankrupt the plaintiff before the case could reach a judgement.

    • .The Green 20 and fellow colluders are nothing but a gang of filthy lying traitors for whom tarring and feathering would be too good.

  10. Don’t the AG’s know their history? Don’t they know that McCarthyism is an abuse of power. Look at how well it worked in the ’50s. Are they that sure in their convictions that they don’t think there is any chance that they will never been looked back in historical documents as a bunch of power mad nut jobs.

    • So much misinformation out there:

      sadbutmadlad wrote: “Don’t the AG’s know their history? Don’t they know that McCarthyism is an abuse of power.”

      McCarthy did not abuse his power, the Leftwing/communist American news media just made it seem that way. Pretty effective propaganda wasn’t it.

  11. We, in Vermont, are particularly blessed that our Attorney General could take some special time out from prosecuting real criminals –

    http://www.wptz.com/news/state-alleges-200m-fraud-by-jay-peak-q-burke-developers/39025472

    to join the Green 20. No doubt he is using our generous tax-payer dollars to punish the heathens at Exxon who surely have known since the early days of the industrial revolution that CO2 thermageddon was inevitable. That they produced modern civilization is proof of their crime and the only solution is to destroy it. Need I ??

  12. ..O.T…but, the Great Canadian Fire that just yesterday was predicted to double in size in days and take months to put out….is today…smaller than it was yesterday, and getting smaller…The liberal Greenies must be so disappointed ! Mother Nature fooled them again…

  13. Mr. Ball,

    “These comments bring to mind the judgment of UK Court Justice Burton when ruling on the suitability of showing Gore’s movie in a classroom.

    “Its theme is not merely the fact that there is global warming, and that there is a powerful case that such global warming is caused by man, but that urgent, and if necessary expensive and inconvenient, steps must be taken to counter it, many of which are spelt out.”

    You use the phrase “climate skeptic” to designate yourself and many others, and I believe that is extremely unwise (in the court of public opinion). You are obviously not skeptical of climate, and cede a psychological advantage to your opponents by accepting/fostering the use of this nonsensical label, it seems to me.

    The “debate” is about a supposed crisis, as you (it seems to me) clearly imply here . . and that is what I am skeptical of. Not climate, not climate change, not global warming, not a “greenhouse” effect, or any of the other crap I must wade through to get to the actual point of contention (global crisis/catastrophic warming), and I suspect that would not be nearly so burdensome if a mere word were added to the commonly used “catch phrase” . . Please consider adding ‘alarm’ , or ‘crisis’, or some such when you use the phrase.

    (If I see you call me insane again (that is what an actual climate skeptic would have to be, I feel), I will not be so polite ; )

      • (That’s what the winky smile is for, Marcus . . I’m being a bit hyperbolic, but do intend to criticize the (to my mind) foolish employment of that phrase. If I (we) am skeptical of the alarmist take on the state of the climate, then saying one is a climate skeptic therefore, makes their take, and climate itself, equivalent, linguistically speaking. Not smart, I say. And I can make more arguments like that one, if Mr. Ball, or others, wish . .)

  14. The tragedy of this whole AGW farce is the billions wasted on it, some of which could instead have been used to really protect and improve the environment. Even worse a proportion of that wasted money has been spent on schemes which are actually damaging to the environment, whether it be the chopping up of raptors and bats, or the destruction of the Orang Utan’s environment.

    • The problem I see with that phrasing, Ronald, is that it does not state/claim a position on the central question . . and can be used by either “side”. I favor ‘climate crisis skeptic’, myself, as that makes the actual point of contention clear, and “returns” the burden of proof to where it belongs, it seems to me.

  15. Perhaps they should be prosecuted. They knew that the “global warming/climate change” stuff was bogus, and yet played along, because it suited them. They knowingly supported an ideology which they knew to be false, costing hundreds of $billions, and untold misery and death among the poor. Throw the book at them.

  16. Exxon knew? Well, the theory was in widespread circulation. So who can blame them for knowing about the theory. Let’s go back even further and look at what people knew.
    Apparently – The Whitehouse knew, back in 1969.
    And we also have (see link below) a clear prediction of the 3 metres of sea level rise in New York, by year 2000, which subsequently failed to manifest. But never mind reality. We have no time for realworld evidence.
    It’s the theory that counts and so let’s find out who knew about the theory.
    Let’s start a #whitehouseknew campaign. Even if just to show how completely ludicrous this ExxonKnew nonsense really is.
    Here’s the evidence that the whitehouse knew:
    https://www.nixonlibrary.gov/virtuallibrary/releases/jul10/56.pdf

  17. “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”

    The tactics that Gandhi used only work against honorable people. Do you think that it would have worked against the NAZIs, or the Stalinists, or the Communist Chinese? How about the Khmer Rouge? Gandhi would have been rounded up and killed. And all of his followers. And all of their families. I can give you examples if you want. So…why do you think that these same tactics will work against the CAGW crowd?? The CAGW crowd have NO HONOR. (Remind me again why we shouldn’t call these people NAZIs. I am just a Simple Red Neck.)

  18. RICO is a law that can only be misused — in fact, it can’t properly exist, since its whole point is to seize an accused person’s (or organization’s) assets before he can even hire an attorney, thus depriving him of one. The R stands for racketeering, and while it was sold to the public as being about the Mafia and drug lords, in reality it’s been used against many small-time defendants.

    But this is probably the first time it’s been used to try to criminalize a political opinion.

    This has happened before, on both sides of the pond. But the last time in the US was about a century ago.

    The persecutors’ heads need to roll. (I used that word on purpose.)

  19. Google Virgin Islands indictment, and you’ll discover that it’s run by corrupt Democratic Party politicians. Is it any wonder this travesty of justice began there?

  20. Why does any photo of Al Gore remind me of Vince McMahon from the WWE? Has anyone seen them in the same room?

  21. I truly find Dr Balls articles to be a light in the darkness of what is, it seems, human nature

  22. “The entire investigation rests on articles published last year by InsideClimate News, a climate activist organization funded by left-wing billionaires. The group alleges that Exxon knew rising carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions could cause catastrophic global warming, but suppressed the information.

    The smoking gun

    was a single email in 1981 from an Exxon in-house scientist regarding the possible effects of increased CO2 emissions.”

    “The group (The coalition, or Green 20) alleges that Exxon knew rising carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions could cause catastrophic global warming, but suppressed the information.”
    _________

    35 years after “could cause”, but didn’t –

    and AG subpoena from the Virgin Islands, –

    interesting.

  23. I think all the oil companies should now pull their funding from the climate institutes, perhaps Exxon should ask for their $100 million back from Stanford, BP should ask for their $20 million from Princeton and their $500 million from Berkley.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2002/11/21/us/exxon-led-group-is-giving-a-climate-grant-to-stanford.html
    https://www.princeton.edu/pr/news/00/q4/1025-greenhouse.htm
    http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2007/02/01_ebi.shtml

  24. The definition given in the subpoena is the one the IPCC should have used. Instead, they limit their work to human causes of climate change.

    A major problem is that the IPCC’s definition of “climate change”, as given in Annex III (Glossary) of the AR5 WG1 report (page 1450) reads as follows :

    Climate change : Climate change refers to a change in the state of the climate that can be identified (e.g., by using statistical tests) by changes in the mean and/or the variability of its properties, and that persists for an extended period, typically decades or longer. Climate change may be due to natural internal processes or external forcings such as modulations of the solar cycles, volcanic eruptions and persistent anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere or in land use.

    Note that the Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in its Article 1, defines climate change as: ‘a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods’. The UNFCCC thus makes a distinction between climate change attributable to human activities altering the atmospheric composition, and climate variability attributable to natural causes. See also Climate change commitment, Detection and Attribution.

    Very similar definitions (/ footnotes) are given in all previous IPCC (WG1) reports, from AR1 in 1990 to AR4 in 2007.

    The “definition given in the subpoena” IS the definition given by the IPCC !

    Unfortunately in practice, in the main reports in general and the SPMs in particular, the IPCC’s use of the phrase “climate change” corresponds to the UNFCCC’s version rather than its own.

  25. If 40 years ago, Exxon had warned about climate change being a risk to their business, and stockholders had believed them, it would have been very misleading, because for the next 40 years Exxon grew like crazy. It would have been actionable. Exxon has routinely warned stockholders about risks due to regulatory actions that might (might!) occur, as do most companies. If they put in some warning more strong than that the gov would also get upset.

    • In addition to that, 40 years ago Exxon had no legal requirement to disclose this risk (if any) to shareholders. It wasn’t until Sarbanes Oxley became law in 2002, that risk assessment become a mandatory part of reporting requirements for public listed companies.

      And whatever risks Exxon may have believed at the time have failed to materialize. Certainly the eighteen year pause, which no one predicted, shows that Climate Scientists have a long way to go in understanding the science of the Earth’s climate.

  26. What would happen if the Fossel Fuel companies shut all their gas stations and refineries and drilling operations and rather like Ayn Rand Atlas Shrugged styled pulled out of America and moved to China and let the U S Economy totally collapse

    • They would go out of business, they make almost nothing in China. Sinopac controls almost everything there, including gas stations, and drilling sites, except for a few joint ventures. Next idea?

  27. If the oil companies had a clue they would step in front of these idiots and say ” just say the word and we won’t pump another drop.”.
    Then the janitors can come in and clean up the you know what that ran down both legs of these fools.

  28. A hilarious part of the accusation is that Exxon was somehow able to “suppress” the information that climate change would be catastrophic in spite of the whole apparatus of the IPCC, government agencies, thousands of academics–as if the only information available was from the handful of scientists who worked for them OR that they were able to prevent the IPCC message from getting out to a million news stories.

  29. A Confession of Liberal (Progressive) Intolerance

    By NICHOLAS KRISTOF – The New York Times – Sunday, May 8, 2016

    “The stakes involve not just fairness to conservatives or evangelical Christians, not just whether progressives will be true to their own values, not just the benefits that come from diversity (and diversity of thought is arguably among the most important kinds), but also the quality of education itself. When perspectives are unrepresented in discussions, when some kinds of thinkers aren’t at the table, classrooms become echo chambers rather than sounding boards — and we all lose.”

    “Universities are unlike other institutions in that they absolutely require that people challenge each other so that the truth can emerge from limited, biased, flawed individuals,” he says. “If they lose intellectual diversity, or if they develop norms of ‘safety’ that trump challenge, they die. And this is what has been happening since the 1990s.”

    By GEORGE F. WILL / Syndicated columnist

    Published: April 26, 2016 Updated: April 27, 2016 10:04 a.m.

    WASHINGTON – Authoritarianism, always latent in progressivism, is becoming explicit. Progressivism’s determination to regulate thought by regulating speech is apparent in the campaign by 16 states’ attorneys general and those of the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands, none Republican, to criminalize skepticism about the supposedly “settled” conclusions of climate science.

    Four core tenets of progressivism are: First, history has a destination. Second, progressives uniquely discern it. (Barack Obama frequently declares things to be on or opposed to “the right side of history.”) Third, politics should be democratic but peripheral to governance, which is the responsibility of experts scientifically administering the regulatory state. Fourth, enlightened progressives should enforce limits on speech (witness Internal Revenue Service suppression of conservative advocacy groups) in order to prevent thinking unhelpful to history’s progressive unfolding.

    Progressivism is already enforced on campuses by restrictions on speech that might produce what progressives consider retrograde intellectual diversity. Now, from the so-called party of science, aka Democrats, comes a campaign to criminalize debate about science.

    • Today on Drudge, they have several articles that quote former employees of Facebook who are quite open about how the company routinely downgraded if not out right spiked news items that were favorable to conservatives.
      Most of them were quite unapologetic about their activities proclaiming that their was nothing wrong in their actions.

      • “They are right, nothing is wrong with their actions. Don’t forget that FaceBook is PRIVATE PROPERTY and they can do what they please.”

        Good thing they aren’t a “private property” bakery making wedding cakes for whom or not whom they please.

      • Those equal gender wedding cake bakery lawsuits would have gone nowhere w/o the backing of “Big Brother.” So why not Federal retaliation against Facebook? Birds of a feather?

  30. There is the letter of the law and spirit of the law. In some communities they have a date you can no longer park on the street for snow removal in the winter. Some city authorities will push to have the police ticket anyone parked on the street as soon as the date comes no matter it is 50° clear sunny day or starry night. Other community authorities follow the spirit of the law and would only send out the police to ticket if it is actually snowing. Bad people misuse laws to their own profit if it serves their own personal interests.

  31. The famous “nine errors”, BTW, were just the most egregious of the 30+ identified by the court.

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