September 23, 2015

RICO, Climate Science, The Tribune-Review and A Whole Buncha Scaife Money

I'm not sure the Tribune-Review editorial board sees how much they're involved in this story.

Or perhaps they do and they're on defense - while hoping no one would notice that they are.

Today they began with:
Climate alarmists have reached a new and troubling low. They're calling for those who audaciously question the hardly “settled science” of global warming to be prosecuted as racketeers.

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., suggests that the federal government treat climate skeptics as it did Big Tobacco — by filing civil litigation under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. And four gaggle of self-anointed leading climate squawkers signed a Sept. 1 letter to President Obama to that end.
Ok, here's what Senator Whitehouse actually said:
The Big Tobacco playbook looked something like this: (1) pay scientists to produce studies defending your product; (2) develop an intricate web of PR experts and front groups to spread doubt about the real science; (3) relentlessly attack your opponents.

Thankfully, the government had a playbook, too: the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, or RICO. In 1999, the Justice Department filed a civil RICO lawsuit against the major tobacco companies and their associated industry groups, alleging that the companies “engaged in and executed — and continue to engage in and execute — a massive 50-year scheme to defraud the public, including consumers of cigarettes, in violation of RICO.”

Tobacco spent millions of dollars and years of litigation fighting the government. But finally, through the discovery process, government lawyers were able to peel back the layers of deceit and denial and see what the tobacco companies really knew all along about cigarettes.

In 2006, Judge Gladys Kessler of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia decided that the tobacco companies’ fraudulent campaign amounted to a racketeering enterprise. According to the court: “Defendants coordinated significant aspects of their public relations, scientific, legal, and marketing activity in furtherance of a shared objective — to . . . maximize industry profits by preserving and expanding the market for cigarettes through a scheme to deceive the public.”
Sound familiar? That's the point the senator was making.

Where it gets RICO-scare for the braintrust comes when Whitehouse references this study, by Drexel University professor Robert Brulle.  Here's what the press release from Drexel had to say about the study.  One of the key findings included this:
Conservative foundations have bank-rolled denial. The largest and most consistent funders of organizations orchestrating climate change denial are a number of well-known conservative foundations, such as the Searle Freedom Trust, the John William Pope Foundation, the Howard Charitable Foundation and the Sarah Scaife Foundation. These foundations promote ultra-free-market ideas in many realms. [Bolding in Original.]
See that?  Until his death, Richard Mellon Scaife both controlled the Sarah Scaife Foundation AND owned the Tribune-Review.

If there's any RICO investigation, it will inevitably lead to money granted by Scaife.  Shouldn't that have been part of the editorial?

Then there's this:
The efforts to silence debate are Orwellian and self-serving. Climate Depot says the lead signer of that Sept. 1 letter and his wife received $1.5 million in government grants from 2012 to 2014.
Climate Depot is a project of the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (even says so on their website).

Guess who gave $2.3 million to the Committee?

Richard Mellon Scaife, by way of the Carthage and Sara Scaife Foundation.

Last time I checked, $2.3 million was more than $1.5.

Shouldn't THAT have been mentioned to the Trib-reading public?  Shouldn't it have been, at the very least, hinted at that the media structure criticized by Senator Whitehouse included the one-time owner of the very paper that's criticizing Whitehouse for that criticism?


Social Justice NPC Anti-Paladin™ said...

government lawyers were able to peel back the layers of deceit and denial and see what the tobacco companies really knew all along about cigarettes.
Like they did Ted Stevens.
Not all smokers die of lung cancer.

Ol' Froth said...

I suggest replying to all of Heir's future off the topic comments with random, sentence like statements. I'll start: Lampshade the underwire oft begats eels.

Social Justice NPC Anti-Paladin™ said...

HTTT here. Changed my display name. The proper ungodly progressive response should be.

Government lawyers were able to peel back the layers of deceit and denial about Ted Stevens.
Ted Stevens was guilt and the prosecutors did nothing wrong as proven by fact that the DOJ will not punish them for their conduct in the Steven's trial. Judge Sullivan engaged in judicial activism as he did with ordering IRS to release documents about the so called non existent IRS targeting.

Dayvoe said...

Eric Holder didn't eat because Maimonides jogged sideways from Athens to Spock's pocket.

Unknown said...

Hey Omega,

It takes exceptional gumption to instruct "progressives" that their correct response to your irrelevant reference to the Ted Stevens case is to peddle lies. If you were interested in the truth, you would show us actual progressives -- outside of the Holder-led Justice Dept. -- who have claimed the prosecutors in the Stevens case did nothing wrong. Instead, you dictate that we are somehow obligated to lie about it. Apparently that's the only place progressives fit into your supposedly Bible-based, theocratic narrative that the "ungodly" must be inveterate liars (Rom. 1:18ff).

Yeah, that's right, I know all about the conservative X'nity that spawned your ridiculous assumptions. Graduate of Westminster Theological Seminary.16 years an elder in PCA, PCUSA, and Bible Fellowship churches, 4 years a PCA pastor. I get the throne reference (Rom 8:17) in your former display name and the "Omega" (Rev. 21:6) in your current one. Let me guess; you're either a theonomist, a dominionist, a RPCNA sympathizer, or just a standard conservative X'n who is aching for the 2nd coming to lift you from your current circumstances (and maybe more important, put all of us "progressives" where you think we belong). That would also explain your so far apparently total immunity to good evidence and arguments in favor of the views you oppose.

Zeus0209 said...

Swiftly dreamt the marsupial queen as she lay in the strawpile near the mailbox.