Unreasonable document demands: tit for tat

From the “it’s only wrong if your side does it” department:

Environmental groups reject Rep. Lamar Smith’s request for information on Exxon Mobil climate case

By Steven Mufson June 1 at 12:05 PM

The battle over Exxon Mobil and the issue of climate change took a new turn Wednesday.

Environmental groups, citing constitutional rights, said they would not comply with a sweeping request for information from the House Committee on Space, Science and Technology led by Chairman Lamar S. Smith (R-Tex.).

The environmental groups and foundations said the request was unreasonably broad, violated their rights to free speech and free assembly, and interfered with their right to petition government officials.

On May 18, Smith’s committee had asked for any communications that might show that eight leading environmental groups and non-profit foundations – along with the attorneys general from 20 states – had coordinated a legal strategy to uncover internal information about climate change that they allege Exxon Mobil had concealed for decades. Smith also asked for communications between environmental groups related to state investigations into Exxon Mobil and whether the oil giant had violated securities and consumer fraud laws.

The environmental groups don’t think the committee is entitled to see that communication.

“In a democracy built on principles and the rule of law, 350.org cannot in good faith comply with an illegitimate government request that encroaches so fundamentally on its and its colleagues’ protected constitutional rights,” said a letter sent Wednesday from the group’s law firm, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan.

The Smith letter appeared to be part of a tit-for-tat after state attorneys general sought old Exxon Mobil documents related to climate.

The environmental groups and foundations have been openly pressing state prosecutors to investigate whether Exxon Mobil had violated securities and consumer fraud laws by not fully disclosing what it knew about climate change and its potential impact on the company’s business as well as the planet.

The oil giant has asserted that it did not violate disclosure requirements and that much of what it knew was publicly available in scientific papers.

’…

A letter from the Union of Concerned Scientists said that while the committee said it was acting in the name of “transparency,” the Supreme Court has said that “there is no general authority to expose the private affairs of individuals without justification in terms of the functions of the Congress … [n]or is the Congress a law enforcement or trial agency.”

 

Full story:https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/06/01/environmental-groups-reject-rep-smiths-request-for-information-on-exxon-mobil-climate-case/

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77 thoughts on “Unreasonable document demands: tit for tat

  1. The environmental groups are wrong. Smith can step it up to subpoena. The law is 42USC 1983 and/or 1983, a civil rights era law making it a crime to conspire to deny any one any civil right. Corporations like Exxon are legal persons. The coordinated actions of the AG’s under the ‘merchants of doubt theory’ clearly was coordinated with at least UCS and one other NGO, and clearly the NY AG office tried to conceal that fact. CEI obtained the emails proving this. NY AG said of his Martin Act fishing expedition, “The first amendment is not a right to commit fraud. Well, 350.org, it does not convey a right to comspire to deny first amendment rights, either.
    What goes around comes around.

    • This absolutely contradicts the standard new view that the purpose of the law is now to “regulate society”. It’s the essence of both dirigisme and a Russian word Upravleniye that calls for the scientific management of people and societies that 350 and McKibben are all for. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/subjugating-the-subjective-factor-via-public-policy-cloaking-upravleniye-another-useful-term/ covers Upravleniye.
      The 180 degree in the purpose of the law is something I have even talked with law deans about. They tell me their accreditation is at risk if they do not now teach law students that the law is an instrument to achieve ‘the common good.’ Now these same people who view the law as a sword want to go back to a more traditional conception and try to turn it back into a shield to hide their shenanigans?

      • i’ve noticed that and wondered, also, when it came to pass that ‘taxation as a form of behavior modification’ became an acceptable notion. got no answer. thoughts?

      • Gomish, That’s a great observation. Tax is a socialist/progressive/liberal tool of control.

      • The behavioral and social sciences absolutely permeate everything being pushed in both education and policymaking by legislative or regulatory fiat generally. I know that. 350 knows that. I am finishing up the sequel to my first book Credentialed to Destroy and almost every time I have found something I knew was not true it comes back to implementing little c communism and Marx’s Human Development Society. I will locate the cited books going back decades and 9 times out of 10 the author on his Acknowledgments page will thank the people at the Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences in Palo Alto where he was a fellow while he wrote the book.
        Amitai Etzioni (father of communitarianism), James Rawls (A Theory of Justice), Thomas Kuhn (new paradigms for science), Daniel Bell (Post-Industrial Society) are just some of the names. It is the tool of choice and the designers and transformationalists constantly tout the ability of a majority to bind the minority and force submission. The ‘rule of law’ to these people is an affirmative weapon. It has nothing to do with tradition or any concept of a threshold even the king may not cross without permission. This response is truly the height of hypocrisy.

      • yes, i actually knew that berkeley is a fountainhead of ‘brother’s keeper’ agenda.
        tom kuhn, a berkeley radical is now a professor there along with a few other people’s park megaphone mouth hippies of yore. they didn’t have twitter for selfies back then..lol
        and berkeley was the pustulence from whence spread the fever of activism – i watched it spread across the country at universities.
        berkeley students with activism degrees were the vectors and the most common starting point at the site of a new infection were the Feminist Women’s Health Center and Rape Crisis Centers.
        the playbook was very simple:
        you get 2 friends, you keep ‘minutes’, you get press by protesting and you distribute flyers to ‘elevate the consciousness’ and generate a ‘crisis’ to motivate ppl to talk about it (this is now called ‘elevating a meme, a process utterly perfected by EncyclopediaDramatica crew on the internet – now defunct) until you can petition for funding to support your activities.
        this is the origin of ‘the activist industry’
        i totally understand the game of getting paid to talk (now it’s called punditry – huffpo is the holotype for it on the internet) and the blogs are the entities where it is practiced.
        no- what i don’t understand, still, is how it came to pass that people accepted the notion!
        i know that if you simply attach the label of ‘rights’ to any issue, no matter how idiotic, it can and usually does conquer all opposition – something freedom loving individuals have yet to comprehend.
        but how did it happen that the individuals forsake their moral justification for existence and submit to this?
        there was no fight! they lay down and gave up and they still chase capes instead of attacking the bull.
        they don’t defend their rights – they submit to anybody else who claims it’s their right to control – the concept of ‘rights’ having been buggered beyond recognition by orwellian abuse of language to prevent reasoning.
        well, maybe if i talk to myself a little more i’ll find the answer.
        i’ll be visiting your site, robin, to see if i can find more clues as you have the perspicacity to observe what is behind the curtain.

      • Part of the laying down and not fighting was guilt.
        Yes there was racism in the past.
        Yes there was sexism in the past.
        Even if they personally were never racist or sexist, the fact that these things did happen was sufficient to cause many to worry that they could not say anything against movements that claimed to be fighting these things, lest they be labeled “racist” or “sexist”.
        It was the fear of being ostracized by such labels that caused many people to just roll over and give the activists anything they demanded.

      • They’ve been telling me that the check is in the mail for years.
        Must be a conspiracy on the part of the USPS.

      • gnomish June 1, 2016 at 11:44 am
        i’ve noticed that and wondered, also, when it came to pass that ‘taxation as a form of behavior modification’ became an acceptable notion. got no answer. thoughts?

        I’ve looked for the clip off and on but never found it.
        Back when Rush had his TV show he showed a clip of then First Lady Hillary Clinton testifying before a committee. She was asked (to the best of my recollection), “Would you use taxes to control people’s behavior?”
        Her answer?
        “I would if I could.”

      • When he was president Bill Clinton gave a speech in which he stated that he wanted to give the people a tax cut, but he was afraid that individual citizens wouldn’t know how to spend the money wisely and that this would hurt the economy.
        Unspoken assumption is that since government is so much wiser than mere citizens, it’s the job of government to take our money and spend it for us. While they are at it, they will undoubtedly find an excuse to control the rest of our lives as well.
        For our own good of course.

      • Robin: This and your following additional information is strikingly similar to the descriptions of societal control – and failure – developed in Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand in 1947! The parallels are amazing and very alarming at the same time. The mere fact that ‘lawyers’ have appointed themselves to ‘regulate society’ is a SCARY concept. And look at the number of legislators and politicians who are formally trained as lawyers.

      • gnomish,
        “…how did it happen that the individuals forsake their moral justification for existence and submit to this?”
        “…they don’t defend their rights – they submit to anybody else who claims it’s their right to control – the concept of ‘rights’ having been buggered beyond recognition…”
        Well, if there is no Creator, there are no unalienable rights .. right? No “moral justification for existence” . . beyond the yimmer yammer of human authorities. You want (as many before you did) people to see the potential existence of a Creator as silliness . . and “ya’ll” have, to a great extent, gotten what you wanted . . to great extent, through control of what was taught in Government funded school, it seems to me.

      • “Well, if there is no Creator, there are no unalienable rights .. right? No “moral justification for existence””
        John, you ignorant slut – morality is the science of choice. Choices are based on a standard of values. That is not instinctive – it requires learning. It is your falure to comprehend an objective standard of values that reduces you to obedience and, being a fool, renders you unable to conceive of such a standard. This is how it comes to pass that your impoverished metaphysics requires supernatural creatures to dictate rules for you.
        Obedience is the choice that leads to abandonment of morality. Don’t talk to me about morality when you have yet to discover the nature of it.

      • From historical times immemorial, the law has prescribed appropriate behavior for the individual in society and proscribed behavior beyond the pale. That is its purpose. For example, the Code of Hammurabi https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Code_of_Hammurabi ALL societies use law to do this, that is true by definition. I know of no social philosophy which does not recognize and attempt to rationalize this. The only possible exception would be pure Anarchism. Even the most radical Libertarian acknowledges that society has that right though within a highly limited realm. To suggest such a fantasy and then to apply it to a group with whom you have political differences can only make the dismissal of associated skeptical arguments easier.
        Even though, it has become tribal and an important signifier of political membership, for both Left and Right, I know many a liberal who does not support the more radical versions of CAGW. Associating Skepticism with a particular political philosophy attempts to closes the door to many a fellow traveler.

      • Gnomish,
        “… ; ) … morality is the science of choice.”
        Word salad to me . . perhaps if you suggest it to the right authorities, it will become another branch of social Siants, with which we can be rendered science deniers.
        “Choices are based on a standard of values.”
        Looks like a good start for the new Siants of morality, man worshipper ; )
        “It is your falure to comprehend an objective standard of values that reduces you to obedience and, being a fool, renders you unable to conceive of such a standard.”
        Oh, and no doubt your standard of values is objective, in your humble opinion . . but that idea leads to a bit of problem with your lofty thoughts, it seems to me; If there is an objective standard of values, and hence morality, would it not require people obey what it proscribes, in order to be moral?
        “Obedience is the choice that leads to abandonment of morality.”
        Hmm . . unless one accepts this objective standard of values you claim to have, and do what it renders as moral, right? Then obedience leads to the embracing of morality, eh, Mr. Objectivity? ; )

      • to uninterested allocating ‘Lügen-Baron Münchhausen’ with Münchhausen Syndrome.
        But yes, greens, suicidal daring their childrens futures prospect Münchhausens property.

    • I’m confused as hell; well that happens a lot.
      These environmental groups are pestering Exxon Mobil for their business information, and this constitutes “petitioning their government.” ??
      Businesses like Exxon-Mobil are generally required to make certain financial and other business related information available publicly for the benefit of their shareholders, and perhaps would be share holders, so they can make informed decisions about being associated with the company, either as a shareholder, or perhaps an employee, or even a customer of the business.
      Any person is free to choose to be in none of those categories or groups.
      Otherwise, they are free to go and jump in the lake.
      Now if there are government agencies that are investigating a business’s compliance with applicable laws (a nearly impossible task; the compliance that is, not the investigating), those inquisitions should of course presume the company to be innocent of non-compliance, until the investigation proves otherwise.
      In the meantime, given the presumed innocence, the government should also be free to invite the inquisitor to go and jump in the lake.
      MYOB or even MYODB should be an expectation of any free person or legitimate enterprise.
      G

    • I’m pretty sure you meant 18 U.S. Code § 241.
      https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/241
      That is the Federal statute about conspiracy to deprive of rights. There is also 18 U.S. Code § 242, which deals with the ACTUAL deprivation of rights (not conspiracy to do so).
      I’m not as familiar with 241, but 242, when it has been prosecuted, has had a conviction rate of very close to 100%. The maximum penalty is life in prison, and it applies to all government officials and agents (even the President).
      In my opinion, many members of Congress, and the President as well, have repeatedly violated 242 and deserve to be in prison.

    • Scott Frasier
      You are correct about 350.org. They have conspired with a number of organisations in Canada including some here in Waterloo. They are attempting to co-opt local aboriginal groups’ issues as ‘part of the need to divest from fossil fuel investments’. This is being funded by 350.org and other unknown backers from the US. In short, they are trying to inflame local issues in a foreign country to serve the political agenda of 350.org’s backers. We presume these to be the interests of Big Gas and Big Green energy companies who are trying to expand the market for their products by driving the competition into bankruptcy.
      The responses about privacy are copied word for word from the replies to recent AG-related suits. That is so funny! What goes around comes around, but like the Steyn/Mann punch and Judy show, the Streisand Effect is in full force. The exposure of collaboration and conspiracy to deprive others of their rights has flipped things around. There is proof that they conspired to unfairly and falsely accuse Exxon of ‘the sorts of crimes’ committed by the tobacco sector. Their plan to create ‘guilt by association of techniques’ was clearly articulated in advance, after more than a year of humming and hawing about how to do it and how to convince the public that these companies were really ‘just like big tobacco’.
      This puts their plan into the same league as “calling people who don’t agree with CAGW ‘deniers of the climate holocaust’ that is surely coming down the pike”.
      Yawn. Sticks and stones…
      As the alarmist meme implodes we should turn our attention ever more acutely to the creation of an alternative – not just assist in tearing down the out-worn shibboleths. We have to create a positive energy about science, the environment and environmental policy that is pro-active, honest, fair to all and sustainable. The reason catastrophism gets so much traction is people are insecure, afraid even, as the world wakes up to the fact that we are all in this together, no one is going anywhere, and we have to get along. Island America is no more. WUWT is a good forum to start presenting articles on how this new version of reality can be explored for our common good. We don’t have to fight darkness all the time. The dawning of realisation has taken place. Let’s light some brighter lights than the “CO2 catastrophes”. The profiteers are not going to change their plans. We have to.

    • ristvan:

      The law is 42USC 1983 and/or 1983, a civil rights era law making it a crime to conspire to deny any one any civil right.

      You are treading dangerous ground with this line of reasoning. Reasonable restraint should be a hallmark of conservative government. Tit for tat fishing expeditions against private sector entities and individuals who are petitioning their government requires a lot more work before you raise it to the level of a subpoena. Even then I would have a hard time being in support of that approach.

  2. Exxon researched climate change for decades and concluded there was nothing there. CAGW, anthropogenic CO2 driven global warming/climate change, has no substance, no legs, all hat, no cattle. Exxon researchers concluded that clouds and water vapor dominate the atmospheric heat engine, GHGs have negligible influence. Even IPCC AR5 7.2.1.2 credits clouds with -20 W/m^2 of cooling RF now as opposed to CO2’s 2 W/m^2 of RF accumulated over 261 years. BTW, the scientific community has also known this for decades. Was this what Exxon “concealed” from the public and “withheld” from their investors?
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/04/18/smoke-fumes-part-deux-exxon-knew-the-entire-theory-of-climatic-changes-by-co2-variations-is-questionable/
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/04/20/the-exxon-climate-papers-show-what-exxon-and-climate-science-knew-and-shared/

    • A conspiracy, obviously. The environmentalists cannot fathom that people can legitimately study the issue and disagree with them. Therefore, anyone who disagrees must be paid to disagree or just be evil. They wanted to uncover evidence to support such information.

      • Of COURSE it’s a conspiracy – anything presented that doesn’t prove the validity of ‘fact’ they have already decided, must certainly be a conspiracy. eg. the ‘anthropocentric’ part of the IPCC definition of global warming [climate change] is obviously true or it wouldn’t be a part of the definition. Therefore if I present data contrary to that ‘truth’ I must be part of a conspiracy. qed

    • It seems to me that any business like Exxon-Mobil has a legitimate vested interest in doing their own research into the impacts of THEIR business activities. For example, they might want to know if some practice they may have the flexibility to alter, might do harm to anything whatever, and possibly expose them to liability. That’s a potential business risk they would want to know about. Or they might want to know which of several methodologies, would lead them to the most economical approach, given that liability risk is a factor in anything they do.
      BUT ! having thus invested their time and money and resources, in pursuing such research; they have developed a valuable asset, that their competitors would love to know about for themselves. They shouldn’t be able to get such an asset for no cost, just by pressuring the government to demand the public release of an asset that say E-M has obtained through their own research.
      After all, if we as taxpayers, can’t even get free access to the research result of taxpayer funded research by think tanks, and other institutions who clamor for public funds to pursue their own amusements or agendas, and use such publicly funded information to feather their own nest via the paywall ransom system; then why should the public demand free access to assets that legitimate businesses have developed at their own expense.
      Legitimate free enterprise businesses have enough hoops to jump through with laws the Congress passes; in addition to the astronomical piles of bureaucratic paperwork drummed up by unelected political appointees, with no demonstrated expertise in relevant subjects. They don’t need to be pandering to self appointed special interest groups pursuing their own agendas.
      G

      • And to think, people are surprised that many companies are willing to forgo the pleasure of being based in the US, just to get out from under the lawsuits and regulations.

    • I guess you missed the part where they proved, with computer models, that a tiny amount of warming from CO2 would cause runaway warming due the positive feedbacks in the models.
      Just imagine if you lived in one of their models. You’d change your tune, fast.

    • What’s the difference between a lawyer and a catfish?
      One’s a muck eating bottom feeder. The other’s a fish.

      • Hmmm. Doesn’t something like 95% of congress have law degrees?
        Gotta be sheer coincidence.

      • If 95% of all Congress members (the hallowed 535) have law degrees, then one would reasonably conclude that the intended meaning of EVERY law on the books, is exactly spelled out in the specific words that are actually written down in those laws.
        The intent of the law IS the letter of the law. How can it be otherwise if 97% of Congress consists of lawyers.
        G
        PS Well there is always a question as to whether in obtaining their law degree, they had to demonstrate a working knowledge of the English language.
        Well every would be legal immigrant applying for US citizenship, is required to demonstrate that capability. We can expect that of our government.

      • George E. Smith: There are those who study the law because they revere it. Then there are those who study law to abuse it and get around it.
        I believe the word is ‘shyster’.
        I think ‘Constitutional Scholar’ can be prostituted the same way.
        Not naming names, of course.

      • Grasping amorality is a necessary state of personality for a lawyer and the recipe for success for politicians.

  3. Over and over the mantra is-
    “Believe and do not question! We are too busy saving the planet to enter your trivial discussions about the necessity of our agenda.”

    • Seems about right – here are some extracts from the Letter from Greenpeace in response to Comittee of science, space and technology:
      «Greenpeace is proud of it´s work and has nothing hide in it´s efforts to address climate change. Nevertheless, we have to ensure that the Committee (as any entity) is operating properly before undertaking to respond to any request for information.»
      «As you know, Greenpeace is an organization that welcomes any public airing of the issues on which it is committed, including the now certain evidence of climate change. To the extent the Committee is engaging in serious review of the need to address this critical issue, Greenpeace could not be more willing to participate.»
      «For more than a decade, Greenpeace has worked to reduce the emissions that cause climate change, advocated for corporate government policies that address climate change and its causes. This work has always been and will always be informed by the underlying science that confirms that climate change is real, and is caused by man-made emissions
      http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2016/apr/19/study-humans-have-caused-all-the-global-warming-since-1950
      … Greenpeace´s long-running commitment to finding solutions for climate change is based on the scientific consensus that action cannot be delayed by politics of false debate»
      This letter should become pensum for students of argumentation techniques.
      So much feelings – so little logic.

  4. His Manniness showed/taught these ecoloons exactly what to do: stall, stall, obfuscate, bouts of self-righteous indignation, stamp tiny feet, stall and then stall some more.
    The old adage of: Do as you would be done by, is an unknown concept in alarmist circles.

  5. A civil rights investigation by Congress? The issue would seem to be that the greens believe that the other side has no rights that they are obliged to respect. Go Lamar!

    • Don’t we also have a judicial branch of our triumvirate government ?? Why would the Legislative branch be crossing branch lines, when we have courts for that ??
      G

      • The judicial branch doesn’t investigate. That’s normally the job of the executive branch.

      • And the executive branch has been completely messed up. Even in the last bastion of truth and decency in the executive branch – Department of Justice – it has been revealed a culture of lying. State of Texas court order against The United States of America
        Here are the quotes I found most essential. This is the introduction to the court order:
        “An exchange between two characters from a recent popular film exemplifies what this case is, and has been, about:
        FBI Agent Hoffman: Don’t go Boy Scout on me. We don’t have a rulebook here.
        Attorney James Donovan: You’re Agent Hoffman, yeah?
        FBI Agent Hoffman: Yeah.
        Attorney James Donovan: German extraction?
        FBI Agent Hoffman: Yeah, so?
        Attorney James Donovan: My name’s Donovan, Irish, both sides, mother and father. I’m Irish, you’re German, but what makes us both Americans? Just one thing . . . the rulebook. We call it the Constitution and we agree to the rules and that’s what makes us Americans. It’s all that makes us Americans, so don’t tell me there’s no rulebook . . . .”
        “Whether it be the Constitution or statutory law, this entire case, at least in this Court, has been about allegiance to the rulebook. … The question addressed by this Court was whether the Government had to play by the rules. This Court held that it did. The Fifth Circuit has now also held that the Government must play by the rules, and, of course, that decision is now before the Supreme Court. It was no surprise to this Court, or quite frankly to any experienced legal observer, that this question would ultimately reach the Supreme Court. Consequently, the resolution of whether the Executive Branch can ignore and/or act contrary to existing law or whether it must play by the rulebook now rests entirely with that Court.”

  6. Eco-loon organizations entertaining contempt of Congress charges!
    How entertaining!
    Let’s see;
    popcorn – check,
    butter – check,
    cayenne pepper – check,
    dark beers and stouts – check.
    I’m ready!

  7. It was widely known, even back in 1969 that by the year 2000, CO2 would have caused a 7 degree F temperature rise, wiping out New York.
    Apparently all this kind of complete nonsense was already in circulation. Exxon did not discover global warming. They did not hide it. It was not hidden. People have always believed in silly things.
    Silly apocalyptic belief systems are universal to mankind and are effectively public domain!!
    “There is widespread agreement that carbon dioxide content will rise 25 percent by 2000, Moynihan wrote in a September 1969 memo. This could increase the average temperature near the earth’s surface by 7 degrees Fahrenheit,” he wrote. “This in turn could raise the level of the sea by 10 feet. Goodbye New York. Goodbye Washington, for that matter.”
    So – THEY KNEW.
    At least they knew about a theory which has since been invalidated by the observation that New York is still standing and not under the sea, 16 years after we were to have kissed it goodbye.
    Honestly though – what a load of garbage.
    #thewhitehouseknew
    https://www.nixonlibrary.gov/virtuallibrary/documents/jul10/56.pdf

    • Wow, Kewl.
      All the way back in 1969, too. For those who do not know, Daniel Patrick Moynihan was a very influential politician for decades. He was often held as the intellectual godfather of Modern Liberalism as the term was understood in the 1970s. The recipient of the memo, John Ehrlichman, was White House counsel and the ringleader in the events which would lead to the Watergate scandal.
      What a Blast From The Past.
      Pretty hard to claim anybody was hiding anything when when alarmist memos like this one were circulating through the corridors of power in Washington DC.

    • Great find, indefatigablefrog!
      I loved the penultimate paragraph,

      In any event, I would think this is a subject that the Administration ought to get involved with. It is a natural for NATO. Perhaps the first order of business is to begin a worldwide monitoring system. At present, I believe only the United States is doing any serious monitoring, and we have only one or two stations.

      And this,

      The C02 content is normally in a stable cycle, but recently man has begun to introduce instability through the burning of fossil fuels.

      Did anyone ever measure the effects of the nuclear tests in the atmosphere? Anyone know?

  8. Gosh. The casual passer-by might view this as unabashed hypocrisy. The old ‘I hold the law, the constitution, and civil rights in the highest esteem when it’s convenient to my purpose and totally disregard it when it doesn’t’ bit.
    It… it’s like… I’ve seen it before. In fact, often enough to be used to it and expect it.
    Wow. Deja Vu.
    I guess this is what happens with people who think their cause, by definition, makes them beyond reproach. They start acting like it.

      • No, just corruption. The “Noble Cause” part they just hide behind, like a mother’s apron.

      • TonyL: ‘No, just corruption. The “Noble Cause” part they just hide behind, like a mother’s apron.’
        For sure that’s the case with the upper-echelon of Gore, Obama, Mann and the like. The thing that gives me fits, however, is how to deal with the rank-and-file types, who genuinely want to do what’s right – a lot of them are genuinely good people.
        It’s hard to blame people for what they are taught, although I do get frustrated by those that never question. It takes a bit of time to explain the ‘WHY’ of it (especially when it varies widely between individuals) and you also have to overcome prejudices that have become indoctrinated into the culture – largely by academia – teachers who go from the universities (an closed-minded environment of pure theory that is never tested by the real world – sort of like computer models), to schools (an environment of pure control).
        But I still can’t abide it. Good intentions have always paved the road to hell. The DDT ban is just one example. Eugenics was another. And the eco-crowd is constantly guilty of this sort of thing, on all sorts of levels, everything from populating northern Australia with salt-water crocodiles (and white sharks in the south), to the organized murder of Keiko the Killer Whale (which, just like they did with the DDT ban, they made the world’s children culpable.)
        And green is even worse. Unlike Eugenics, which villainized ‘mongrel races’ in an effort to save humanity, AGW theory villanizes the entire human race – western civilization and the U.S in particular – to save the planet FROM humanity. It demonizes production of food, energy, means of transportation, and demands total capitulation under threat of prosecution.
        And because those guilty believe themselves good people, they will not stop. They have the courage of their convictions. It’s like a pre-modern-era doctor who forces a blood transfusion on a patient but knows nothing about blood types, killing patient after patient, but won’t stop because he’s ‘there to help.’
        Really, it’s not a lot different from what caused the old Salem witch-burnings.
        But I refuse to let them get away with it – on a person-to-person level, I will make sure everyone knows the damage they cause in pursuit of their ‘warm fuzzy.’ In Oregon, it’s branded me a bit of a soapbox nut, but I’ll be damned if I let someone walk way from me in ignorance – or if they do, it will be willfull ignorance, because I’ve put it all out in front of them.

  9. Cough up the information green slim . You want to tread on peoples rights must mean you believe they don’t have any . Now guess what neither do you . Feel good hypocrites ?

  10. What Rep Lamar Smith should do is contact the remaining Republican State AG’s and have them contact these Environ-Mental Groups with Subpoenas for the e-mails, (Or Exxon’s Lawyers under the guise of Pre Trial Discovery) Then it isn’t the Government making the request but rather the Legal System. Perhaps even a Grand Jury Subpoena and Indictment

  11. So, they’re basically saying that employees of Exxon knew the end was nigh, but decided to keep it from the public in order to maximize profits until the apocalypse arrived.
    Riiiiiiight.

  12. C’mon folks, not need to get upset. It is common knowledge that everyone is equal but some are more equal that others.

  13. Leave private entities (people) out of it; First Amendment, anyone? Public entities (Attorneys General) are fair game. FOIA the heck out of all their communications (with any entity) concerning public business. Congressional oversight includes access to all governmental communications, with clear exceptions. If somebody wants privacy, they should avoid lobbying government.
    This post may seem to violate my “So long, suckers!” missive. That avoidance policy, however, only applies to pointless, trivial wrangling with people such as “Wandering In The Weeds” Mosher. Mastering and misapplying/misinterpreting arcane “facts” is not a sign of intelligence. Substantive discussions with such practitioners is impossible.
    Dave Fair

  14. On May 18, Smith’s committee had asked for any communications that might show that eight leading environmental groups and non-profit foundations – along with the attorneys general from 20 states – had coordinated a legal strategy to uncover internal information about climate change that they allege Exxon Mobil had concealed for decades.”
    The fact is that NGOs are often international organizations and can indeed be funded by foreign governments. As a voluntary, paying customer of Exxon for decades, I resent these activists–many with ties to foreign interests and funding–attempting to criminalize selling affordable fuel to me.

    • And in one decade I purchased over 145,000 gal of fuel.
      How do you think everything gets shipped in this country? If you bought it, a truck brought it. What about the tractors and personal transportation?
      I think all these activists should take the train for the rest of their lives as partial punishment for attempting to criminalize fuel used for travel, shipping and farming in the US. Mean I know.

      • Modern trains use modern fuels, though.
        Better make it a steam locomotive. Wood-burning boiler (no coal car for you!). Then leave them to ‘enjoy’ their fossil-fuel free (but still CO2-belching) mass transit.

  15. “…In a democracy built on principles and the rule of law, 350.org cannot in good faith comply with an illegitimate government request that encroaches so fundamentally on its and its colleagues’ protected constitutional rights…”
    In other words, they can’t comply because of principles and the fundamental laws of this democratic nation, no matter how much they might really want to!
    Reminds me of a line from “Caddyshack”…
    Judge Smails: “Danny, I’ve sent boys younger than you to electric chair. Didn’t want to do it, but felt I owed it to them.”

  16. From the article: “The environmental groups don’t think the committee is entitled to see that communication.
    “In a democracy built on principles and the rule of law, 350.org cannot in good faith comply with an illegitimate government request that encroaches so fundamentally on its and its colleagues’ protected constitutional rights,” said a letter sent Wednesday from the group’s law firm, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan.”
    Here these Alarmists and Government Officials are trying to take away the skeptic’s right to free speech, and they are complaining about their own rights being violated. They are going to be doing a lot more whining in the future, I think.
    The First Amendment and the Skeptics and the Science have the upper hand in this matter.

  17. Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh also rejected the committee’s request for information about his internal deliberations on the case. Moreover, he said in a letter posted on his Facebook page, “communications between our office and scientists ought to be cause for praise from the ‘Science’ Committee, not suspicion.” He said that the committee “does not have jurisdiction to intrude upon the law enforcement actions of the chief legal officer of a sovereign state, much less scrutinize the privileged internal deliberations that underlie those actions.”
    ____________________________________
    On the other hand, GAs should praise the help of ANY ‘Science’ Commities or whatsoever on science topics / behalves.

    • Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh seems to be conspiring to take away the First Amendment Rights of American citizens. That’s a crime, no matter who you are, private citizen, or government official.
      In about nine months, the FBI might get interested in this matter, if they are not already.

  18. The overly broad requests in the letter(s) from the Science Committee seem more like harassment than a legitimate inquiry by government. Very disappointing. I hope they drop this line of attack and get back to governing.

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